Jack Hayford speaks to pastors and church leaders at a pastors’ forum in Singapore.
Contributed By Darren Tan
|PHOTO: Lan Chong|
“Majesty, worship His majesty,” the old familiar chorus was sung heartily by more than 200 pastors and church leaders at Love Singapore Pastors’ Forum on Sep. 21. The forum was held at Trinity@Paya Lebar, the campus of Trinity Christian Centre in Singapore. The song brought back fond memories for many in the crowd who came to hear its composer and distinguished speaker for the forum, Jack Hayford. Hayford is the founding pastor of The Church On The Way in Van Nuys, California.
The Pastors’ Forum is part of a series of interactions organized by the Love Singapore network for senior pastors, pastoral workers and staff members of churches in the network. These events include prayer retreats, luncheons and forums.
The 76-year-old chancellor of the Los Angeles-based King’s College and Seminary (which he founded in 1997) peppered his presentation with humor, vigor and enthusiasm, leaving the audience enthralled by his wise and balanced views, stemming from years of experience in ministry and walking with God.
Hayford’s first piece of advice to the crowd was most impactful. He challenged them not to seek to build big churches but rather, to seek to build big people. Explaining that Jesus Himself said that building the Church was His own responsibility, the believer’s goal should not be to acquire people but to accommodate those that God has given to the Church. The aim of every church is to disciple its members to become fruitful in the spheres where God has called them to in their daily lives.
Exhorting the importance of the four absolutes of growing a church, Hayford put forth that the power of a church is not in the number of members who have enrolled in the formal ministries of the church, but how many are released to be effective in their life’s purposes.
Hayford disclosed how many pastors focus on the methods of building mega-churches, which is evidenced by the popularity of church growth conferences and the wholesale copying of “successful” methods. He advised the room not to focus on methods but instead, to relate to how God prepared the mega-churches before they became such. “We should be asking the senior pastors questions on the dealings of God in their lives, [asking] what God did ‘in’ them before He did it ‘through’ them. Find out what shaped their thinking. What were their original targets or goals … which may not necessarily have been to build big churches,” said Hayford.
Concerning the ministry and the gifts of the Holy Spirit, Hayford believes that while some may have a particular gift consistently manifested through them, generally, all believers have the potential for all the gifts to be manifested through them. He told the crowd about how he formed his thinking while watching a televised interview of evangelist Oral Roberts. Roberts had said, “I don’t have gifts of healing, but I’m privileged to be God’s errand boy for His gifts of healing for others.”
The Pastors’ Forum proved to be a refreshing experience for those who attended, offering opportunity for pastoral workers from various churches to fellowship and be updated on the Christian scene in Singapore.