Case Study: Don’t Tell the Elders or I’ll Lose My Job

Case Study Don't Tell the Elders or I'll Lose My Job

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Biff wants to be a pastor. To make matters worse, his parents believe in a two-tier Christian system: those who are in the ministry and those who are not. Biff is now 32 years old. His identity is wrapped up in what he does for a living, rather than the Christ who saved him.

Mable, Biff’s wife, does not like his current ministry. She hates living in a “fishbowl.” Their biggest arguments have historically centered around whatever ministry Biff was doing at the time. Mable recently told Biff that he could do whatever he wanted to do, but she would never “sign off” on his pastoral desires, or being a pastor’s wife. She clarified that she would never divorce him, but he should never expect her to change her perspective.

Biff had hoped he could live in two worlds: marriage and ministry, but he has come to realize the tension is too much. Nobody knows what is going on in Biff’s home. He is afraid to be honest about the state of his marriage. He recently said,

If I let the Elders know, they may ask me to step down from my current ministry. I don’t want to lose what I have now.

Case Study Questions

  1. Why do you believe Biff should (or should not) be in the ministry?
  2. What scriptures would you use to counsel Biff, and why would you use them?
  3. What should their marriage look like for him to be qualified for the ministry?

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