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Summary: What attracts people to a pastor? The Scriptures are filled with examples of men who drew others after them in love for God. Men such as Moses, David, Peter, and Paul, had vast numbers of followers. On the other hand, men such as Elijah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel

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GATHERING THE FLOCK

INTRODUCTION:

A. WHAT ATTRACTS PEOPLE TO A PASTOR?

1. The Scriptures are filled with examples of men who drew others after them in love for God.

2. Men such as Moses, David, Peter, and Paul, had vast numbers of followers.

3. On the other hand, men such as Elijah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Apollos never had much of a following.

B. WHAT MADE THE DIFFERENCE?

1. Charles Spurgeon said it takes love to be a good pastor. (Spurgeon’s Expository Encyclopedia, vol. II, p. 80)

2. Spurgeon spoke of what he knew and love is definitely essential for a pastor.

3. But love is not the difference between a Moses and an Elijah, for both had love.

4. The difference is not in devotion, but in the gifts and callings of God.

C. THERE ARE DIFFERENT ANOINTINGS

1. Some men preach eloquently, but they can’t pastor a church.

2. Some can hardly preach, but they do well in pastoring a church.

3. A good preacher who is not called to be a pastor may attempt to pastor a local church.

4. He may have a strong beginning, but within a few months or a year it will dwindle to nothing.

5. His power to preach is undiminished but it doesn’t satisfy the sheep.

6. The flock is not satisfied with eloquence and revelation alone.

7. Some are called to an itinerant ministry, they don’t belong in the pastorate.

8. God divides the gifts severally as He wills.

9. This is just one of many reasons why sheep sometimes scatter.

I. HOW TO SCATTER THE SHEEP

A. AN EMPHASIS ON MIRACLES WILL SCATTER THE SHEEP

1. Fifteen years ago I thought one of the things that would build a church quickly and solidly was an emphasis on miracles.

2. I thought if I could get God to perform enough miracles, the people would come in droves.

3. It seemed to work for a while, but eventually these religious thrill seekers would race down the road to some other place looking for a new thrill.

4. I have since learned that God does not build a church on signs and wonders but on the teaching of His word.

5. Miracles excite the sheep, but in the long run only the word of God causes believers to grow and multiply.

B. THERE’S A BUILT IN LIMIT TO MIRACLES

1. When God heals a woman who is deaf, everybody gets excited and expects more of the same!

2. Next, when God heals a man who is blind, everybody gets excited and expects more of the same!

3. Afterwards, when od heals a lame man, everybody gets excited and expects more of the same!

4. The people sometimes go crazy with excitement, but they always want more, more, more!

5. They want the spectacular and the sensational.

6. So, what do you do in the fourth and fifth service?

7. Somebody might say, "Raise the dead!" So, what do you do after God raises all the dead and heals all the sick in your church?

8. If all God wanted us to do was perform miracles, eventually we would be out of people to perform them on.

C. MIRACLES WERE MEANT TO CONFIRM THE WORD

1. Miracles, signs, wonders, and gifts of the Spirit were given to confirm the message of the word.

2. Their purpose is to authenticate the gospel.

3. They were never intended to replace preaching and teaching.

4. They were meant to support the preaching and teaching of the Word of God.

II. OVERDRIVING THE FLOCK SCATTERS THEM

A. TOO MUCH RESPONSIBILITY OVERDRIVES THE FLOCK

1. With literal sheep, pushing them too fast or too far can kill the lambs and the weaker sheep.

2. In time it can kill the entire flock.

3. That same type of thing can happen in a local church.

4. A pastor can overdrive his flock by pushing them too far and teaching beyond their depth.

5. The Bible makes a distinction between the "milk" and the "meat" of the Word.

6. Beginners must be fed milk until they have become grounded in Christ.

7. If we try to feed them meat when they are only ready for milk, it will starve them and eventually devastate them.

8. Sheep need to be pastured in the green grass of the fundamentals of Christ before they are taken to the deeper things of God.

9. We must discipline ourselves to avoid the sensational in favor of the nutritional.

B. YOU CAN OVERDRIVE THE FLOCK WITH TOO MUCH PROPHECY

1. Some think if each person in the church had hands laid on them while someone prophesied over them, they would grow.

2. They think a direct revelation of each person’s ministry would establish a strong local church.

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