What are the top five tasks of a Pastor
Pastoral Leadership in the New Testament
It seems to me that where the Bible
touches on the matter of Christian leadership, it supports the strong
leadership role for the pastor. A pastor, by definition, is related to a flock
as its leader. More specifically, in the several passages where the New
Testament deals with the matter of leadership, some highly descriptive and
appropriate language is used:
John 10:1–5. The pastor shepherds, calls by name, leads, and walks ahead. The
people hear his voice, recognize it, and follow him. The truth for today is that. it places every minister who leads a church
under the high obligation of loving and nourishing his flock. It summons every
member to follow and feed and grow. And finally, the shepherd does not have the
lambs; the sheep do. He leads, they reproduce. Together they produce “babes in
Christ” and grow them to “men in Christ.”
1 Thessalonians 5:12–13. The pastor works hard, admonishes, and warns. Pastors are
to be proactive in correcting and supporting their people. They must be firm
with those who are idle and gentle with those who are weak. Time may be short,
but true pastors take a patient and long-term approach. They must encourage
forgiveness, kindness and peacemaking. This is in contrast to the legalism and
feuding of pagan society.
Hebrews 13:17. The pastor has rule, watches over souls, and gives account. The
people obey and submit. Leaders are commissioned to watch over us and must give
an account to God. Those who prove by their exemplary life and sound teaching
to be worthy of respect most certainly deserve it.
1 Peter 5:1–5. The pastor feeds the flock, takes oversight, is an example, and
Pastors are to follow Christ’s
example and function as servants in the Christian community (Matt. 20:25–28;
cf. 23:11). Leaders are “to prepare God’s people for works of service” as
ministering members of the body (1 Cor. 3:1–9; 2 Cor. 10:8). And leaders are to
“shepherd” (guard, and guide) the local community of faith (cf. Heb. 13:17).
Leaders must be men who are equipped for these tasks, in part by gift, but
essentially by character (1 Tim. 3:1–7; Titus 1:5–9). Leaders in fact
“shepherd” by both teaching (Titus 2) and by modeling, or serving as an example
(1 Tim. 4:11–16; Titus 3:10, 14).The shepherding ministry does not mean leaders
exercise control of believer’s
behavior. It does mean they focus on nurture, encouraging maturity so that
believers’ acts of service will be an expression of love–motivated desire and
Holy Spirit enablement. When leaders do shepherd, and do so because they want
to serve rather than for financial gain or status, Christians will mature.
5. Pastors teach how members should conduct themselves in the house of
God (1Tim3:14-15) .God’s
church is a family, so “household” might be a better translation. Paul advised
young Timothy to treat the members of the local church as he would treat the
members of his own family (1 Tim. 5:1–2).Because the local church is a family,
it must be fed; and the only diet that will nourish the people is the Word of
God. It is our bread (Matt. 4:4), milk and meat (1 Cor. 3:1–2; Heb. 5:12–14),
and honey (Ps. 119:103). A pastor must take time to nourish himself so that he
might nourish others (1 Tim. 4:6). A church does not grow by addition, but by
nutrition (Eph. 4:11–16). It is tragic to see the way some pastors waste their
time (and their church’s time) all week long and then have nothing nourishing
to give the people on the Lord’s Day.
a family, a church needs discipline in love. Children who are not disciplined
become rebels and tyrants. The spiritual leaders of the assembly should
exercise discipline (1 Cor. 4:18–5:13; 2 Cor. 2:6–11). Sometimes the children need
rebuke; other times the discipline must be more severe. Children also need
encouragement and example (1 Thes. 2:7–12). Spiritual leaders must have the
gentleness of a nursing mother and the strength of a loving father.
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