Posted by: Joe Palmer | February 13, 2011

Should I Become a Bible Teacher

Should I Become a Bible Teacher?

By Joe Palmer

See also Part 1 How to teach the Bible and Love It.

The topic of teaching can be confusing when it comes to the Bible. In fact there are two verses that seem to be in conflict with one another.

THE WARNING FOR TEACHERS “My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body.” (James 3:1–2 NKJV)

THE REQUIREMENT TO TEACH: “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food.” (Hebrews 5:12 NKJV)

So should you be a teacher or not? The reality is these verses are not really in conflict with one another. James is instructing people to not pass themselves off as competent to teach what they are not competent to teach and Hebrews is telling us that at some point we should be qualified to teach.

So Let’s consider some guidelines on what, when, and how we should teach.

  1. We should all teach that which we are qualified to teach. James said some of you aren’t qualified to teach so stop doing it. He most likely has in mind someone who is teaching the more difficult areas of scriptures not simply just sharing the Gospel which obviously even a novice in the faith can do.
  2. We should not hold ourselves up arrogantly as teachers. – Regardless of how competent, knowledgable, and qualified we should be humble in our teaching. We should recognize that greatest of us have much to learn, and the simplest of can teach something.
  3. We should be seeking to be qualified to teach. – Every Christian should seek to be qualified to teach. First seek to be qualified to teach the gospel. Second, to be qualified to lead our family and to instruct our own children. Third, we should seek to be capable in an every increasing capacity to instruct the church in the Word of God.
  4. We should understand there is an obligation in teaching. Hebrews is clear there is a point when we ought to be teachers. There is a clear mandate to spread the gospel (Mark 16:15,16) There is the responsibility to have competent men to shepherd the flock of God. We shouldn’t fear the obligation but we should accept it with a serious mind. At some point most people should be teaching on some level.


So are you seeking to be a teacher. All it takes is a thirst for God’s word. Remember that as you seek that God makes us this promise: “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him”  (James 1:5 NKJV)

NEXT: The Purpose of Teaching


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