Should I Become a Pastor If My Wife Isn't Saved?

The following is an edited transcript of the audio.

Should I become a pastor if my wife isn't saved?

I don't think so. I'm answering this, I want to say, "off the cuff," but that's not the best analogy. Rather, off of my heart I'm trying to think of the ache—the horrible ache, that is—for the guy who maybe thought he married a believer, and then she had a crisis and it turns out she isn't.

And 1 Corinthians 7 is clear: you're with her forever. You're going nowhere. And you're going to try to win her. Just like the wife tries to win the husband, he tries to win her by loving her in the best way possible.

But the reason I say "probably not" is that, in the pastoral epistles, the elders are to have their families in a good order.

"Good order" doesn't have to mean all of them are saved necessarily, if, by the way he loves his family, he is showing himself to be a good leader that can lead the church.

And he wasn't necessarily foolish in marrying the wrong woman, because a woman can have a crisis of faith 20 years into marriage. And there he is: he thought he was going to make a career change toward the pastorate at that moment, and now she's not with him at all.

I just don't think that practically it could be very successful.

I could be wrong on this. You could email us and say, "I did that, and I've been a pastor for 10 years. And my wife supported me in it. She thinks I'm crazy to do it but loves me."

I don't know how that might look, but it would be really hard, I would think. Because being a pastor has such burdens on it, burdens that affect the home and burdens that involve the wife. And, oh my, it would just introduce a tremendous stress, I would think, into the man's life that would be almost unbearable to do it this way.

I haven't thought much about that question, but that's what comes to my mind first.

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