In 1 Timothy, we are given additional qualifications of elders in the church:
2. Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full[a] respect. 5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. 7 He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.
The overseer, or pastor, is to be free from marital infidelity, have a gift of teaching the Word of God, not prone to division or strife, not greedy, and a person who is maturing in the faith. Most of these qualifications are repeated in Titus 1, meaning these qualifications are non-negotiable.
There are additional qualifications that I also think need to be considered. A pastor should not seek out fancy titles for himself, such as apostle or bishop. Reverend or pastor work just fine. Besides, the title apostle died when the last apostle died in the first century.
I believe we are all born to where God has called us and continously directs us to our next calling. Have you ever noticed how some new preachers sound like other preachers? I have even seen some extremely young men preach in way that usually takes decades of ministry to prefect. And it came off as insincere.
I believe God has equipped everyone called to ministry to find and preach in their own voice and personality. I am a country boy from the mountains of Western North Carolina. My voice and personality reflect that, especially when I am singing. I excel at Gospel, Bluegrass, and Country music. I am terrible at pretty much everything else. I also have a certain key I like to sing in. Although I have always liked music and singing, it took me 28 years to discover my own voice.
I believe a pastor needs to have some outside interests completely unrelated to his ministry. A pastor should be so full of the Bible that he is always ready to give a word when needed (2 Timothy 4:2), but most of the people he will interact with will want to discuss something other than the Bible. I know a pastor who likes to watch basketball games. Some pastors like to Garden. Personally, I am a huge Batman geek. Although not a subject for everyone, I am told it makes me more down to Earth. Have you ever met a pastor who can only talk about the Bible? Some of the most boring people on Earth! An outside interest also gives the pastor an opportunity to focus on something else.
In these days of largely unchurched people, it is necessary for pastors to study apologetics. These areas include creationism, cults, and atheisim. Pastors should always be learning in these areas.
A pastor is never to old to learn or be mentored. Unless the pastor is his nineties, there is always another pastor with more experience and knowledge. A pastor should be teachable and be willing to be corrected if he is wrong.
A pastor should be fairly accessible to his congregation. I would never attend a church where I could not see a pastor outside of church services. The pastors who make this difficult usually have something to hide. I speak of my own experience dealing with a pastor who lived 90 miles away from the congregation. There was no accountabilty and no one had any idea how much offerings were given and where they went. Which brings me to my next two points.
A pastor should live within the community he serves. This makes him more accessible and available in case of any emergencies.
A pastor needs to be authentic. He needs to be the same person on the streets as he is behind the pulpit.
A pastor needs to be able to set and maintain boundaries. Yes, emergencies do arise. But taking care of his flock should never come at the expense of the pastor or his family. Pastors also should not counsel any members of the opposite sex alone unless they are a blood relative. This is a good example of shunning the very appearance of evil.
Pastors should be able to kick disruptive people out occasionally. Galatians 2:4 says that that false believers had infiltrated the church at Galatia. Not everyone on the pew is a Christian. Some people are in church on a mission from the devil. They may be gossips or prone to violence. Pastors should bring along witnesses to talk to the individual. If there is no change, the person may need to be expelled and banned from attending that church.
I think about this subject all the time. These are all characteristics I want to have when I am pastor. Please pray for me.