This is the best conference session I have ever experienced. There was a session by Andy Stanley at the WCA Global Leadership Summit in 2006. But that is second compared to this teaching. This is a MUST for all pastors to watch and re-watch.
1 Peter 5: 1-4 So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: 2 shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight,[a] not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you;[b] not for shameful gain, but eagerly; 3 not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.
Peter is saying to pastors, the chief shepherd is coming back and there will be a reckoning. You will give an account, and you should be ready.
It is a sobering responsibility to shepherd God’s people who Christ purchased with his own blood
8 Questions of Every Pastor:
1. Do you love your ministry more than you love Jesus?
- Peter describes himself as a fellow elder, and as a partaker in coming glory.
- His one command: shepherd the flock of God
- Remember Jesus’s last exhortation to Peter: do you love me? Then feed my lambs
- The call to lead the church comes from love of Christ
- There were times when Platt’s life was disconnected from intimacy with Jesus. Praying publicly but not privately. Loved ministry far more than Jesus.
- Maybe the word you need to hear most now from God is “I love you and desire intimacy with you”
- Love for ministry must flow from love for Jesus
2. Are you content to care for the congregation God has entrusted to you?
- “Shepherd the flock of God, that is among you, exercising oversight” – 1 Peter 5
- Oversight means to take care of
- God has entrusted certain people to you and me as pastors to care for them
- Yet if we are not careful, as pastors, we can easily look past them
- Instead of caring, we compare
- We look at younger churches, or older, or mature, or in the city, or with more money, or with less problems, or with more people, etc
- Reports of other churches growing, instead of giving us a reason to celebrate, makes us make excuses for ourselves. Or to undermine the others
- Competition robs us of contentment
3. Is pastoring a job for you to perform, or a passion for you to fulfill?
- God warns us, don’t begrudge any of the work you have been called to do
- Simeon kept preaching, even when he couldn’t speak louder than a whisper
- Do we weep over the people to whom we preach? Even as we preach?
- Do we long for their salvation with fervor?
4. Are you pridefully concerned about what others think about you, or humbly consumed by what God has called you to?
- 1 Peter 5:2 – shepherd as GOD would have you
- We have such a propensity to please others, or even ourselves
- My heart swims in a sea that prioritizes myself
- Platt life verse – John 3:30, but this verse doesn’t mark his life. He really believes that he wants to exalt Jesus, but he wouldn’t mind becoming greater too
- Simeon: 3 lessons for pastors – 1. Humility, 2. Humility, 3. Humility
5. Are you driven by what you get in ministry, or what you give in ministry?
- Shepherd not for shameful gain, but eagerly – 1 Peter 5
- The posture of a pastor is to serve and give, not to receive or be served
- Simeon kept his salary the same, gave extras away, and even refused his brothers riches to inherit
- Are you spending restless effort, buying up every effort to spread God’s kingdom overseas?
- Is your church using every opportunity to take the Gospel to every people group?
6. Is your leadership based on intimidation of others?
- Shepherd the flock, not domineering over those in your charge – 1 Pet 5
- As if those in your flock are even yours!
- The leaders of the church are the servants of the church, Jesus says
- There’s no place for a sense of entitlement. For an heir of superiority, as if we weren’t vile sinners. For oppression or coercion. For personal profit, sexual immorality, unrighteous anger, and more.
- Simeon had a bad habit of getting angry at small things – a man wrote “how can a man who preaches and prays so well to be so angry.”
7. Is your life worthy of imitation by others?
- Shepherd the flock, being examples to them – 1 Pet 5
- Brothers, imitate me – Paul
- The people of God will not be what they cannot see
- They need to see your integrity
- Why do you think the qual of elders are character qualifications?
- Let us each ask, “If the church I lead imitates me, what will they look like?”
- What in my life is not worthy of imitation? How can I change for their good?
- Generally, as is the minister so are the people
- A lack of health in the church must mean a lack of health in the pastor
8. Does the way you pastor make no sense on this earth, and total sense in eternity?
- Shepherd the flock…when the chief shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory – 1 Pet 5
- Everything we have seen hinges on the coming of the chief shepherd
- If this world is all there is, live it up
- If we are not careful, we can take the same principles of worldly leadership and apply them in our lives as pastors. Where we are competing to be better than each other
- This world is not the end. It is passing away. The king is coming. He will reckon and He will reward.
- What pastor among us is not privy to pride? Is worthy of imitation? None of us are perfect and that’s the point. Jesus is the chief shepherd and he oversees our souls.
- Let’s all look to him. Let’s long for the day He will come back.
- Two things matter most: enjoy God in everything, and enjoy everything in God.
- Simeon on his death bed: I don’t think now. I enjoy.