Be An Example
by Pastor Bill Anzevino

Pastor Bill Anzevino, a Youngstown, Ohio native and a 1979 graduate of Rhema Bible Training Center in Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, has been Senior Pastor of Christian Assembly since August 1979. His remarkable ability to accurately teach the unadulterated Word of God has been a benefit to the local congregation, the tri-state area, and also to those tuning in by television to his Sunday morning television broadcast, “Voice of the Word,” airing on WTOV TV Channel 9 Steubenville, Ohio.

Because of his passion to teach God’s people faith, many have entered into full-time ministry, are pastoring churches, or are traveling around the world presenting the Gospel to untold millions. Pastor Bill, along with his wife Krista and their family have established a superb example of leadership for all those he comes into contact with. Pastor Bill is an avid sports fan and cheers his Brown’s and Ohio State teams on in an arena of Steeler fans. Go Pastor Bill!

For more information about Christian Assembly Church, you can visit their website at

1 Timothy 4:12
“Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity.”

Being called to serve the people Jesus died for is a great privilege that carries with it tremendous responsibility. Knowing this, Paul in his letters to Timothy, provided instruction to guide him in fulfilling his ministry and living an exemplary life before God and man. A major point of emphasis was for Timothy to be an example of believers in six areas of concern.

Be An Example

In (1) speech, (2) conduct, (3) love, (4) spirit, (5) faith and (6) moral excellence. An example is a model to be copied or avoided. The first generation Israelites failed to enter the promised land because they copied the wrong model. Had they copied the model of Joshua and Caleb, they would’ve entered in and enjoyed the many blessings of God. God wants His leaders to be a model to be copied not avoided.

In Speech

The judgment upon those ten leaders who influenced God’s people to speak against Him was severe. They died by the plague before the Lord. One commentary stated that the plague involved worms eating away their tongues, jaws and navels. The Jews believed this to be a just retaliation for sinning with their tongues. These leaders were judged by a higher standard than the laypeople because God requires more from leaders. How mindful we must be to use speech that inspires faith in those who hear us. This is no small order, but one every leader should take to heart. Realize it or not, many are influenced by what we say and how we say it. Like Joshua and Caleb we should be leaders others can copy in our speech.

In Conduct

At my annual check up my doctor emphasized the importance of a regular exercise program. I told him I exercise at least three times a week. I asked him how often he exercised. He said, “not at all, but in my profession, you do as I say, not as I do!”

As leaders, we are to be models others can copy in speech and conduct. In other words, our conduct and behavior should model what we preach and teach. In John 15:13 after washing the feet of His disciples Jesus said “for I have given you an example (model to copy), that you should do as I have done to you.” Jesus came to minister not to be ministered to. We are anointed to serve not to be served. Our anointing is a precious gift from God never to be viewed as a reason for special treatment. David’s anointing didn’t exempt him from judgment when his conduct and behavior displeased God.

The enemy strives to diminish our influence and effectiveness by tempting us to yield to our feelings and emotions. He desires to tarnish our testimony and ruin our witness in the process. Whether within or without the church, we must constantly be striving to conduct ourselves in ways that will promote and not hinder the message we proclaim. This includes being humble, doing what is right, walking in integrity, being angry without sinning, treating people with kindness, exercising patience, being ethical, never condescending, being accessible, showing mercy and maintaining a forgiving spirit.

While waiting in line at the local dry cleaners I was challenged by a man who came in pointing his finger at me screaming that I cut him off in the parking lot. Instead of yielding to my emotions, I turned to him and said “Sir, if I did that I want you to know it wasn’t intentional. I’m really sorry and I want you to know that God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.”  The man stood speechless and ashamed. The enemies plan to cause me to lose influence backfired.

In Love

First in speech, then actions, now in our motives. Love is to be the controlling motive behind all the activities of our lives. If not, our works will not pass the test of fire and as Paul said, we’ll be nothing making much noise to no profit. I Cor. 13:1-3. The ministry should be viewed as God loving others through us. Thirty years ago when God spoke to me about becoming the Pastor of Christian Assembly Church, I questioned why he would call me. Without formal training I felt unqualified for the position. I finally came to the conclusion that God was much wiser than I could ever be. I then knew He saw something in me that could be used to accomplish His purpose at our church. I said to the Lord “I know I can love the people and teach them what I know, the rest I’ll leave up to you.” Love never fails, and in our situation, love has done “exceeding abundantly beyond anything we could ask or think.”

In Spirit

Paul said we are to be “fervent in spirit; serving the Lord.” Rom. 12:11  Fervent is hot heated. It is the same word Peter used to describe the end times when the elements shall melt with fervent heat. A disciple of the wise men among the Jews is said to be “fervent,” because the law is a boiling pot to him. How much more should disciples of Christ be fervent in spirit who have not the law, but the grace and glory of God to inflame our hearts with the fires of zeal and enthusiasm? Jesus wants us hot, not lukewarm. He is our model to copy when it comes to zeal and enthusiasm. He set His face like flint to go to Calvary and complete the work His Father gave Him to do. Nothing could distract Him from fulfilling His life mission. If we find ourselves weary in well doing, fainting in our minds, just consider His example and allow Him to once again ignite within and set ablaze the fires of zeal and enthusiasm that will spread to those we serve.

In Faith

Unbelief provokes God because it challenges His love and integrity. God went to great lengths to establish both. The cross establishes His love, swearing by an oath establishes His integrity. In Heb. 6:12-19 we have a record of God confirming the immutability of His counsel by an oath. To confirm means to remove all doubt by an authoritative act or indisputable fact. Every promise and statement of fact is guaranteed by the new covenant sealed by the Blood of Jesus. God said “my covenant will I not break nor alter the thing that has gone out of my lips. Ps. 89:34

David knew his covenant and stood fearless before Goliath. His faith was based on fact, not feelings. As leaders we must model faith others can copy. Remember the ten spies who died by a plague that ate their jaws, tongues and navels?  Their example of unbelief kept the people they served out of the promised land. Under the leadership of Joshua God raised up a new breed of believers who refused to utter a sound in unbelief while walking around walls that represented the impossible. When our son was born with 22q11, DiGeorge Syndrome, Tetralogy of Fallot, no immune system, and no left pulmonary artery, we were told he would not live through the night. By faith he grew a left pulmonary artery to normal size and is now eight years old. We thank God for those who, through faith and patience, inherited God’s promises and modeled faith for us to copy. We owe our sons life to following their example of faith.

In Moral Excellence

Whatever our level of faith, Peter said we are to add to it moral excellence, a virtue that has been much disregarded in today’s society. Joseph was an example of moral excellence. He had an opportunity to satisfy his fleshly lusts with Potiphar’s wife but he chose moral excellence. He had the opportunity to be bitter in his anger in prison, but he chose moral excellence. He could’ve executed vengeance on his brothers who sold him into slavery, but he chose moral excellence. Time and time again Joseph chose moral excellence over satisfying his fleshly desires. Joseph’s reason for his moral excellence is summed up in his statement “how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” Gen 39:9  Every leader is challenged with fleshly desires. We all have our unique temptations. We all have our unique choices to make. We all face making choices that will honor or dishonor God. It’s up to us to know how to possess our vessel in sanctification and honor. In a day, when many leaders have fallen victim to moral decline, when immorality and lasciviousness run rampant and unchecked, may we as leaders who desire to be examples believers can follow, add to our faith moral excellence and recognize the need to cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit perfecting holiness in the fear of God.