Sunday, January 26, 2014

The Pastor

Temple Baptist Church - 1-26-2014
2 Timothy 2:24-26
A. The word “pastor” means “to tend a flock.” When teaching a young pastor how to run a local church, the Holy Spirit gives a warning concerning how to handle the “sheep” in verse 24-25. “The servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves.”
B. These verses are vitally important to both the pastor and the flock as it deals with the reciprocal relationship between the pastor and the congregation: the pastor must teach and admonish with a right attitude and the congregation must hear and heed with a right attitude.
C. Tonight, I want to look at the pastor’s responsibility for a few minutes.
1. The pastor is God’s man. I full well understand that the pastor is just a man because I am one but one must understand that he is God’s man! This is not a thing of pride but of fact. Why God chooses whom He chooses I do not know but I do know that God’s man is God called! I can take you to the time and place where God called me into the ministry.
1 Timothy 6:11 But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
2 Timothy 3:17 That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
2 Timothy 2:24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,
2. The pastor is your man. Ephesians 4:11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
a) God gives these men to the local church for a reason. Ephesians 4:12-13 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: (13) Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
b. God gives these men to you for a reason! Ephesians 4:14-15 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; (15) But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
Jeremiah 3:15 And I will give you pastors according to mine heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.
D. Many of the pastors who fill the pulpits as well as the preachers that cross our land are simply hireling prophets. They are in the ministry for what they can get and not for the glory of God and the edification of the saints.
E. With any position of authority and the possibility of abuse that comes with it, care must be exercised. With this in mind:
1. The pastor needs to be a loving man. I have often said, “If a preacher cannot love my people, he cannot preach to them!” The same goes with the pastor. He needs to love his people and that love will circumscribe his ministry while causing him to seek the best for them. One of my favorite verses is found in the First Corinthian epistle’s last verse.
1 Corinthians 16:24 My love be with you all in Christ Jesus. Amen.
2. The pastor needs to be a gentle man. Sheep are very skittish animals when mistreated or alarmed. The verses below show both strength to rule and gentleness to lead and care for the sheep. The sheep belong to the Lord and needed to be treated as such. God’s men are not to be dictators who are self-serving but under shepherds
Isaiah 40:10-11 Behold, the Lord GOD will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him. (11) He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.
3. The pastor needs to be a patient man. Instructing with meekness and patience those whom God has entrusted to his care. People do not always grow up spiritually at the same pace. There are those who grow up fast and bear much fruit while others remain in a state of spiritual babyhood for years or life. Love and gentleness bring about longsuffering and patience.
Hebrews 5:11-12 Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing. (12) For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.
4. The pastor needs to be a knowledgeable man. In order to be “apt to teach,” the pastor must have a good understanding of God’s Word. No one will ever have all of the answers but he should be able to answer much and find the answers to what he does not know.
2 Timothy 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: (17) That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.
5. The pastor needs to be a faithful man. Faithfulness is a requirement for the ministry as God’s men are to be an example to the flock. Faithful is dependable and followable. That last word man not be in your dictionary but it is a good one to add.
1 Timothy 1:12 And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;
1 Corinthians 11:1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.
6. The pastor needs to be a ministering man. God’s man needs to follow the Lord’s example when He washed the feet of the disciples. No, I am not a “foot washer” because I believe the verse teaches the Master taking upon Himself the lowest form of a servant and ministering to His disciples.
2 Corinthians 12:15 And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.
7. The pastor needs to be both God’s man and your man! The pastor needs to be an available man. I have known too many pastors whose phone numbers are unlisted or their cell phone numbers are not known. A pastor’s work is 24/7. Answering machines need to be answered.

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