Ethics for pastors

code of ethics

The calling to serve the body of Christ as a pastor brings with it a call to high ethical standards that flow from the New Testament exhortations to pastors/elders/overseers—see, for example, 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:6-9.

It is common (and appropriate) for Christian institutions and denominations to follow these biblical instructions in publishing a code of ethics for elders. The National Association of Evangelicals has done so in a code of ethics for pastors ( as has Grace Communion International in a code of ethics for elders (

Candidates for ordination as elders and for appointment as pastors, pastoral team members and fellowship group facilitators within GCI in the U.S. complete an application that includes affirmation that their behavior aligns with and will continue to align with GCI’s code of ethics for elders.

Our thanks to these men and women for their commitment to live and minister in this way. In doing so, they lead us by example in the way of Jesus. Let us all pray for them in this great responsibility.