12 Ministry Questions Church Leaders Have Asked

As a seminary professor and church consultant, I hear a lot of questions about church. Here are some of the most recent questions (without my response). What are your thoughts about any one of these questions? 

  1. Is it best to set a minimum age before a young believer is baptized? That is, how does a church determine when it’s best to baptize a child or teen?
  2. For what particular sins should a church carry out church discipline? All of them? Some of them? If only some, which ones?
  3. Should the pastor know what each church member gives to the church? Is knowing acceptable since the pastor’s the spiritual leader for the local body?
  4. With all the internet access to sermons, at what point does a pastor’s sermon become plagiarism? Must a pastor cite a source every time he uses one?
  5. Is there any such thing as a genuine co-pastorate where both leaders are equally leading? Or, is there typically one primarily leader in actuality?
  6. Can a church get too big? If so, what is that size limit?
  7. How do you convince an aging, ineffective pastor it’s time to retire? More and more churches are dealing with this tough question.
  8. How long should a church constitution and by-laws be? Is it best that it be shorter? More detailed?
  9. Is it wrong for a pastor to consider leaving a church while they’re still responding to the COVID crisis? If so, at what point would a pastor seemingly have freedom to go?
  10. How much time should a pastor set aside weekly to work on his sermon? And, how does he convince the church that he’s still doing his ministry from behind the study doors?
  11. Does the process of a stronger church “adopting” a struggling church promote a pastor’s kingdom over God’s kingdom? Some have argued that mergers build only the egos of stronger church pastors.
  12. Is revitalization of a declining church even possible? This question has usually come from an exhausted pastor.

Again, any responses to any of the questions? 


  • Chuck,
    Thanks for your posts which asks questions. Presently, I’m leaving a position as a Director of Missions to return to the Pastorate (at age 66) Many of the questions you have ask in your blog will be a great benefit to assist in this new responsibility. This is NOT retirement for me, this is a clear and present challenge to be on the front line of the gospel during these difficult days in our land. Keep’em coming.

  • #1, I only require that a child be able to explain sin, forgiveness and personal trust in Jesus.
    #4, I like to cite my sources when they are known…but I’m sort of nerdy that way.
    #10, there is an old adage about prepare 1 hour for every minute of preaching. That lessons with experience. I usually plan for 10 hours to preach a 25 minute message. Sometimes it’s enough, sometimes not.
    #12, it is indeed possible.

  • Kevin says:

    Answer for 1-12: it depends.

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