The Call of a Spiritual Father

2013 Resurgence Conference


In this session from the 2013 Resurgence Conference, Judah Smith recounts growing up around a father whose faith in God was contagious. Judah calls ministry leaders to consider what it looks like to serve as a spiritual fatherhood and spiritual sonship. Judah is Lead Pastor of the City Church in Seattle, WA. He is author of Jesus Is _____. 


1 Corinthians 4:14-17 (ESV)

14I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children.15For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel.16I urge you, then, be imitators of me.17That is why I sent you Timothy, my beloved and faithful child in the Lord, to remind you of my ways in Christ, as I teach them everywhere in every church.

Scripture quotations marked (ESV) are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


Who served as a spiritual father early in your faith? What about that relationship has most impacted you?
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Judah described himself as a pastor with a pastor. Why do you think it is important for pastors and church leaders to have a shepherd?
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Who provides spiritual oversight to you? What role do they play in shepherding and caring for you?
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How do you encourage others to imitate you? How do you serve as a spiritual father?
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Spiritual fatherhood and sonship are aspects of discipleship. At any point in the Christian life, you should be making disciples, as well as learning and growing under and along mature believers. In this sense, you are both a spiritual father and a spiritual son. Ask that the Lord would give you the grace to live a life worthy of imitation, and a heart that is open to being molded and shaped into the image of Christ.


For more information about the Resurgence Conference, or information on how to attend next year's event, visit their website.