Summary: There has been much teaching on the role of the pastor and his relationship to those God has placed in the local congregation under his authority.
The Sheep and Shepherd
There has been much teaching on the role of the pastor and his relationship to those God has placed in the local congregation under his authority. There has been much hurt caused by imbalanced teaching; as well as improper, or abusive methods of leadership. Throughout the Bible, God’s people are referred to as "sheep" (Psalm 79:13 (quickview) , 100:3) and sheep have need of a shepherd to both feed and tend to their needs. It is important that we are careful to avoid the extreme measures that advocate "lording" over every aspect of the lives of the congregation instead of leading the sheep. But we must also be careful not to miss the fullness of God’s purpose for His church by failing to submit to a local church body and pastor.
What is a Shepherd?
The word "shepherd" is used in both the Old and New Testament. It means "one who tends herds or flocks" (not merely one who feeds them). Both the Hebrew and Greek words, translated as "shepherd", are also translated "pastor".
Is Jesus the only shepherd?
What are the duties of a shepherd?
Feed the flock
Strengthen the diseased
Heal the sick
Bind up the broken
Bring back those who were driven away
Seek for the lost
Not rule with force or cruelty
Be shepherds after His own heart
Feed the sheep knowledge and understanding
The New Testament scriptures tell us:
What value does God place on His sheep?
Jesus looked upon the people of His day with compassion, for He saw them as sheep without a shepherd. Though He is the Chief Shepherd, when he ascended, the pastor/shepherd was a gift to the Church. (Matthew 9:36 (quickview) Ephesians 4:13 (quickview) )
The Word of God commands His people to submit to and to obey those that have rule over us because they watch over our souls. (Hebrews 13:17 (quickview) I Corinthians 16:15 (quickview) , 16)
Six "MUSTS" for sheep
Must know the voice of the shepherd.
Must follow the shepherd
Must eat what the shepherd feeds