More than once I have been accused of appropriating Lloyd-Jones to my charismatic cause. Today I want to restart my MLJ Monday tradition by sharing a quote which comes from a context where the Doctor is strongly disagreeing with one of my positions. He is talking about the so-called Ephesians 4 ministries. The Doctor divides these into two groups, believing that all but pastors and teachers are temporary. I believe that they all continue, although I think of modern-day apostles as being, in some important ways, different to the original. Anyway, the Doctor then goes on to speak into what is perhaps a less interesting discussion, but one that is worth opening up nonetheless. Does Paul have in mind two distinct groups, the pastors and the teachers, or one group of people who are both pastors and teachers? Let’s see what he has to say:
The permanent offices are described as those of ‘pastors and teachers.’ This group is much simpler to understand, although there has been much dispute as to whether pastors and teachers are two different offices. I agree with those who say that they are one. Were they two separate offices we would expect to read, ‘He gave some, apostles; some, prophets; some, evangelists; some, pastors; some, teachers’; but the apostle writes, ‘some, pastors and teachers,’ linking the two together; and generally speaking, these two offices are found in the same man. They apply to a more settled state of the Church, and have persisted throughout the centuries. The office of a pastor is generally concerned about government and instruction and rule and direction. It is borrowed, of course, from the picture of a shepherd. The shepherd shepherds his flock, keeps the sheep in order, directs them where to go and where to feed, brings them back to the fold, looks after their safety and guards them against enemies liable to attack them. It is a great office, but unfortunately it is a term which has become debased. A pastor is a man who is given charge of souls. He is not merely a nice, pleasant man who visits people and has an afternoon cup of tea with them, or passes the time of day with them. He is the guardian, the custodian, the protector, the organizer, the director, the ruler of the flock. The teacher gives instruction in doctrine, in truth. The Apostle proceeds to elaborate this, showing that we need to be built up, and that we must not remain ‘babes.’ We must be protected against ‘every wind of doctrine,’ and the way to do so is to give instruction and teaching.Although I say that these two offices generally go together and have done so throughout the long history of the Church, sometimes one man has had more of a pastoral gift than a teaching or preaching gift; at other times a man has more of a teaching and preaching gift than a pastoral gift. This is a matter of individual variation according to the gift of the Spirit. But in the Church you have these offices, these men who teach and preach and care for the souls of the members of the church.”
— David Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Christian Unity, Studies in Ephesians (Chapter 4, verses 1 through 16), Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, 1972, p. 192.
I have had an e-mail from a correspondent who strongly believes that Lloyd-Jones was wrong about pastors and teachers being one office. My correspondent cited the grammatical work of Dan Wallace (see p. 284 of his Greek Grammar—Beyond the Basics) and an article on the evangelist, which discusses this point (p. 30ff).
I also have had another e-mail on the subject which said, “We actually had to study a full-length technical paper on this verse by Dan Wallace as part of our second-year Greek course. He does not argue that they must be two separate offices—he does not go that far. What he says is that the Greek language does not demand that they be one office. We should determine the answer from the context. Personally I go with theoretically separate giftings which are very commonly held by the same person. (Apostles can also be teachers, etc.)”