Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: This is the 9th sermon in the series "Church On The Rocks". This sermon identifies the responsibilities of a pastor.

Sunday Morning January 19, 2003 Bel Aire Baptist Church

Series: ¡§Church On The Rocks¡¨ (#9)


1 Corinthians 4:1-21


1. I have learned after 4 years of being a pastor that everyone except me knows what the pastor should be doing. I know that sounds harsh, but that is exactly what Paul was saying to this church in Corinth and from the way I see it, things haven¡¦t changed much after all of these years.

2. See, the way I figured this out is because I hear things like, ¡§Preacher you need to go see so and so.¡¨ Or, ¡§Preacher such and such is broken and you need to make sure that gets fixed.¡¨ Or, ¡§So and so is unhappy and you need to go find out what you did to them¡¨. Or, ¡§Preacher, you know you said we should be worried about the salvation of our friends and family? Would you go talk to my neighbor about Jesus because I don¡¦t think they are saved?¡¨ The list goes on and on.

3. I have also learned that many people think their pastor doesn¡¦t do anything except preach 2x¡¦s on Sundays and he does something on Wednesdays for an hour or so. These people are absolutely amazed when they find out that the pastor works an average of 75 hours a week.

4. While some think that preachers do nothing others feel like their preacher should do everything at the church. After all, you pay his salary. When I say everything I mean things like plumbing, landscape, cleaning, repair, child care, etc¡K ¡§Hey, if that preacher really loves Jesus, He will do whatever it takes to grow this church¡¨. By the way, these people also expect the pastor¡¦s wife to pick up the slack from anything he can¡¦t get done. So is this how God wants it to be? May be this is why so many churches are having problems. Their pastor is not pasturing the church because he is too busy doing everything else in order to keep his job.

5. So what does the Bible say a Pastor should be doing? Let¡¦s look at 4 descriptions of a pastor in our text this morning.

1 Corinthians 4:1

Description #1: A Servant Of Christ

1. The word ¡§servant¡¨ in our text means ¡§under rower.¡¨ An under rower was a galley slave who rowed a ship from the bottom tier of the ship. These were the ¡§low lives¡¨ of the slave world. There job was to move that ship forward for their captain.

2. The pastor is to be an under rower for the Kingdom of God. He is to move the church forward for the captain of the ship. Who is the captain? It is God. How does the Pastor know God¡¦s direction? By listening to God speak to Him through Scripture and prayer. That means that the Pastor¡¦s prayer time must be a priority. Statistics show that the average Pastor prays 5 minutes a day.

3. There is 3 very important points I must make about the Pastor being a slave:

„« First, who does the pastor serve? God.

„« Secondly, who tells the pastor where to lead? God.

„« Thirdly, does this make the Pastor anymore important to God than anyone else? Absolutely not.

1 Corinthians 4:1-8

Not only is the Pastor to be an ¡§under rower¡¨, he is also described as¡K

Description #2: A Steward

1. It is interesting that Paul says that a Pastor is to be an under rower, which was a very insignificant slave; and then he turns right around and says that the Pastor is to be a steward, which was a very influential slave. A steward was a slave who was given the responsibility of managing the master¡¦s house. Our text tells us that God has entrusted His Word to Pastors and that they need to be faithful in the management of that Word. This is not saying that God¡¦s people are not supposed to study His Word on their own. What it does mean is that the Pastor should focus his time on the study, preaching, and teaching of the Word of God.

2. Now as a under rower for Christ and one who is entrusted with the Word of God comes much criticism. You may be thinking, ¡§That just isn¡¦t true¡¨; but it is. See people want to have things done their way and as long as that happens it is fine, but if that changes watch out. But, Paul says, ¡§I don¡¦t care if you talk bad about me.¡¨ As a servant and steward for Christ what people think doesn¡¦t really matter. What matters is what God thinks.

3. This also brings up the fact that as God¡¦s people if we would do what God is asking us to do and not worry so much about what others are not doing we would not have so many problems. See, if you are focused on the fact that someone else is doing their job wrong and you are spending your time critiquing them; then you probably aren¡¦t getting your job done. It goes back to the fact that most Christians are sitting in the bleachers yelling out to the coach (God) and those playing in the game about how bad they are doing. What that person needs to do is shut up and get in the game and they would find out that the way they thought it was may not be reality.

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