Mentoring Future Christian Leaders

in Research

In this paper, I will focus my discussion on the biblical rationale for a mentoring internship in the training of future pastors and church planters. The development of a sound biblical basis for mentoring pastors and church planters is vital if churches and educational institutions are to profitably partner together in the grand task of fully equipping future Christian ministers of the Gospel. It is insufficient to ground mentoring in a pragmatic judgment that mentoring is being popularly utilized in the business and educational worlds of our day.

My objective is to demonstrate that the concept of mentoring Christian workers through a well-conceived internship is not a novel idea. The Scriptures, in both testaments, provide many examples of relationships that reveal mentoring dynamics. Each biblical example can be profitably studied to discover principles for the mentoring of modern day pastors and church developers. Though the words “mentoring” and “mentor” do not occur in the inspired text, the concept is found abundantly throughout the pages of Scripture, both in pattern and precept. The primary examples of field-based mentoring of ministers of the gospel are seen in the New Testament (NT) records, in the ministry models of Christ and his apostles. Yet the Old Testament (OT) also gives us rich insights of mentoring relationships. If we define mentoring as “a relational experience in which one person empowers another person by the sharing of God given resources”1 then wonderful illustrations of mentoring can be seen in the older testament.

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