Temple Baptist Church - 6-20-2010
1 Thessalonians 5:12-13
A. As I preach on the subject of “The Church,” I will often deal with the “Church-Pastor” relationship. There are two major problems in this particular relationship that have hurt our churches.
1. Churches that have dictators in the pulpit. 1 Peter 5:2-3 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; (3) Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock. (These will hurt and scatter the church.)
2. Churches that do not submit to pastoral authority. Hebrews 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. (These will be self-governing and the church will be run by deacons, trustees, families, or individuals instead of by the Bible.)
B. In order for the church to function right, this relationship must be a biblical one. Much of the problems above are because of simple misunderstanding.
1. The dictator does not realize that these are God’s children or sheep. You belong to the Lord and I am one of you. 1 Peter 5:3 called you “God’s heritage.”
Psalms 127:3 Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.
Psalms 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.
2. The people do not realize that the pastor is God’s man.
Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (12) For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
C. A twofold problem exists today that is hindering greatly the pastor-church relationship.
1. Pastors are constantly moving. A few years ago, a survey said that the average stay of a pastor in a Baptist church was 18 months. When they get to know the people or their sermons run out, they begin to look for greener pastures. These churches are often run by deacon boards, trustees, or influential families.
2. People are constantly moving. We have as many people leaving through the back doors of the church as we have coming through the front doors. Many are leaving liberal churches just to find out that fundamental churches are too conservative for them. They live in a spiritual “no man’s land.” Many are fault finders who are looking for a perfect church (in their eyes) that does not require them to be perfect.
D. Because of such problems as the above, people never really get to know their pastor in a biblical way and the pastor does not get to know them!
E. The bible says to “Know them.” Most people never understand their pastor. Paul, when writing to the Corinthian Church, rebuked the divisions that were brought about through this ignorance. The Corinthian believer’s perspective was off. Not having a proper perspective of God’s man will cause you to do one of two things.
1. It will cause you to elevate your pastor to a plane of perfection that he cannot fulfill and, if he falls, you will fall with him.
2. Or, it will cause you to lower your pastor to a position of disrespect and, therefore, render his influence ineffectual and he will not be able to help you.
How To Get To Know Your Pastor
1. Get To Know Him As A Person. 1 Corinthians 2:3 And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
True, he is God’s man but he is also just a man. His wife is just a lady and his children are just children.
a. He has feelings
b. He has faults
c. He has failures
d. He desires only the best for you.
e. He desires only the best for your family.
f. He desires only the best for the church.
g. Do not hurt him or his family and do not let anyone else do so.
h. Do not listen to slander because he will be slandered.
i. Be careful how you treat him.
j. Be careful how you talk about him.
k. You love and protect his family as he does yours!
2. God To Know Him As A Pastor. Matthew 9:36 says, “But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.” You need a pastor! God made it that way! Your children need a pastor and the way you know your pastor is going to dictate how they get to know him. Sheep without a shepherd will soon lose their direction, scatter, and fall pray to their enemies. God’s people are like sheep. You do not need an Interim Pastor! You need a God called, God sent Pastor!
a. He is your gift.
b. He is your friend.
c. He loves the Lord.
d. He loves the Word.
e. He loves the saints.
f. He loves the sinner.
g. He loves you!
3. Get To Know Him As A Preacher. 1 Thessalonians 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
a. Hear what he has to say.
b. Honor what he has to say.
c. Heed what he has to say.
4. Get To Know Him As A Protector. Acts 20:29 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
a. He watches over you.
b. He worries over you.
c. He wars for you.