Pastor Appreciation Month: Day #11
October is Pastor Appreciation Month.
Take time today to express to your pastor how much he means to you.
The Portrait of the Pastor (I Peter 5:1-4)
I Peter 5:1-4, “The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: 2 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 examples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.”
Notice some things that these verses say to the Man of God.
2. The Man of God Must Fight the Foes (I Peter 5:2b-3)
Peter continues to share the mission of the pastor. He is to take "oversight" means "to inspect, care for, to look after carefully, or to oversee." "Not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind." The pastor is to serve the Lord willingly, not by constraint. This word "constraint" means "by force, torture; a state of distress, trouble, calamity, or pressure." The pastor's heart, however, needs to be in his ministry. This word "willingly" doesn't suggest that a pastor is never discouraged or that he does not have days when he is not enthusiastic about ministry. A man is not to enter the ministry for the purpose of having a financial career or making money. We are not to pastor for the money, but because God has called us to pastor. We are to feed the flock, not fleece the flock. A pastor is not to be greedy for money. Making money and getting all the money he can out of the people is not to be his motive for ministry. This issue of filthy lucre, however, does not mean that a pastor should never be paid. On the contrary, Paul taught that the pastor should be financially taken care of by the church. He is not in the ministry for money, but the church is to take care of his financial needs. “Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.” Peter addresses an important point here about pastoring. The pastor is not to lord over God's heritage. We are to be overseers, not overlords. Paul spoke about this same issue of domination. The phrase "lords over" means "to bring under one's power, to subdue, to dominate, to be master of someone, to put into subjection, to control." Lording over the congregation is not the same as leading the congregation. The word "example" carries the idea of the pattern for which something is made, an example to be imitated." Your life is to leave a good mark on others. It is to be an example, a pattern that others can follow to serve the Lord. Sheep are animals that are led, and the same is true of the church. Lead by example. This is what Paul did with his life (I Timothy 4:12; Titus 2:7; I Corinthians 1:11).
NOTICE: The life of the preaching will be determined by the life of the preacher!
3. The Man of God Must Face the Father (I Peter 5:4)
The Chief Shepherd, the Lord Jesus Christ, is going to return and appear again. When this happens, the labors of the pastor, the under-shepherd of the church, will be rewarded. Keeping your eye on the return of Christ will help you in the ministry. It will give you hope that the Lord is returning soon, perhaps today. It will motivate you to be faithful.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship with Christ.