3 Ways a Pastor Serves His Church

Let Your Pastor Be Your Pastor—Part 1

Being a pastor is a great privilege. The Bible tells us, “This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work” (1 Timothy 3:1). It is a good thing to desire to serve God as a pastor in His church. (God give us some men—young and older—who would have such a desire!) Yet, being a pastor carries with it great responsibility toward God’s people.

Many people are confused about what a pastor really is and what God has called  him to do. To some, a pastor is just a preacher. To others, a pastor is the one who “marries and buries” people. The Bible describes for us exactly what spiritual leadership responsibilities God has given to a pastor:

Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation…Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give an account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you…Salute all them that have the rule over you, and all the saints.—Hebrews 13:7, 17, 24

Because so many do not truly understand the importance of the role of the pastor, many people live without allowing a man of God to be their pastor. Yet, when we begin to understand the spiritual role God has given to pastors, it becomes clear why it is so important to allow your pastor to be a pastor to you. 

So, from these same verses, let’s consider why each one of us needs to allow our pastor to carry out these spiritual responsibilities on our behalf. From these verses, let’s consider seven areas of spiritual leadership God gives to a pastor.

1. The Pastor Is to Feed the Flock

Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of GodHebrews 13:7a

It is the pastor’s primary responsibility to ensure that God’s people are being nourished by God’s Word. This is reiterated in many others places in Scripture.

Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.—Acts 20:28

Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;—1 Peter 5:2

The pastor instructed by God to preach THE WORD. God has not commanded the man of God to preach his own word, but to preach God’s Word.

I charge thee therefore before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and his kingdom; Preach the word—2 Timothy 4:1-2a

We are instructed to honor the spiritual authority in our lives because they have been entrusted to communicate God’s Word to us. Thus, one of the best ways you can allow your Pastor to pastor you is by letting him preach and teach God’s Word to you. (And that means you must be in church when he does so!

2. The Pastor Is to Lead the Flock

Remember them which have the rule over you…whose faith followHebrews 13:7

One of the titles the Bible gives to a Pastor is “bishop.” This is a term that means the pastor is to be the overseer of the church.

This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.—1 Timothy 3:1)

Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.—Acts 20:28

The Pastor operates as an under-shepherd, appointed by the Holy Spirit, to lead God’s people under the direction of the Chief Shepherd, Jesus. The church is not the Pastor’s to lead however He wants. Every man of God is responsible to lead God’s people as God leads Him to do so.

It is of Jesus that it is written, “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence” (Colossians 1:18).

I believe with all my heart that every pastor (and every spiritual leader) will one day have to stand before Jesus Christ Himself to give an account for how they executed the great responsibility that was given them to oversee His church.

God reminds pastors that, “When the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away” (1 Peter 5:4).

Every person ought to have a pastor they can go to for spiritual leadership. Go to your pastor for counsel. Let him give you insight from God’s Word in every major decision you make in life. In this way, you can let your Pastor pastor you!

3. The Pastor Is to Intercede for the Flock

In the early days of the Jerusalem church, there arose a great amount of “details” that had to be taken care of. These things included such things as taking care of the widows and those in need. With the increase of responsibility for the church, it became necessary for men to be appointed to serve by ensuring that these practical needs were being met. (We call these men “deacons” today.) In particular, take note of why the Apostles felt the need to delegate these responsibilities to these men.

Then the twelve called the multitude of the disciples unto them, and said, It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables. Wherefore, brethren, look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word.—Acts 6:2–4

The spiritual leaders of the church recognized prayer and preaching as two of their primary responsibilities—ones that absolutely could not be neglected.

One of the primary responsibilities that God has given to a Pastor is to pray for the membership of the church. There are some battles that can only be won on our knees. God has called the pastor to labor for God’s people on his knees.

One of the best ways you can allow your pastor to pastor you is by letting him know how to pray for you. Confide in your pastor. Tell him how to pray for you specifically. Ask him for counsel. Hebrews 13:17 says that your pastor is to “watch for your soul.” It is hard for him to intercede for you in prayer if you do not let him know how to pray for you.

Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up…The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.—James 5:13–16

This part one of this article. Please check back to read part two.

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