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The PASSION Blog
The PASSION Blog is a place where I share reflections on faith, life,
church life and the Bible.
The Pastor's role
23 February 2017
Pastor I recently started to look at the Pastor’s role according to the
Bible. We all have our ideas of what the Pastor should do, but I think
it is important to start from what the Bible says.
Pastor only appears once in the New Testament. This might surprise some,
as it did me when I looked it up first time. So what is the context of
the one time it is mentioned?
Ephesians 4:11-12 says, “11 Now
these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the
prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. 12 Their
responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the
church, the body of Christ.”
This is the only reference to the Pastor. The role
mentioned above is an equipping role. Equipping the people of God to do
the work of God in the church and the world.
I asked someone at
the denomination that I am apart of and they said the same thing. The
Pastor is there is equip the church to do the work of ministry, not do
the work of ministry on behalf of the church.
So the Pastor’s
role is a teaching and equipping role. This happens through sermons,
Bible studies, and encouraging the church in
The interesting thing that I aslo found is the Greek
word used for Pastor is Poimen. This is translated as Pastor in the
above passage, where is other places it is translated as shepherd. This
is where the Pastor as a shepherd image comes in.
In 1 Peter
5:2-3 it says, ” 2 Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care,
watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as
God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve;
3 not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the
The second role of a Pastor
is to shepherd God’s flock. To watch over them, look out for them,
counsell them, provide an environment where they can grow in their faith
in Christ, living out a goldly life and to lead them with the other Elders to the place where God
wants them to be.
Pastors do so many things but the two main
roles they will be accountable to God for is equipping the church
members to do the works of service and shepherding the flock entrusted
to their care.
My final thought of the role of a Pastor is the
Greek word for flock. It is Poimnion, which is closely related to
Poimen. This means a group of believers. The focus on the Pastor should
first and foremost on the group of believers they are overseeing.
It is a really interesting exercise to research the biblical role of
the Pastor. With people expecting so much of Pastor’s and the many
different roles they undertake, equipping and shepherding needs to be
Just hang in there
22 February 2017
as I was reading Hebrews 10, the following two verses jumped out at me…
Hebrews 10:35-36 - So do not throw away this confident trust in the
Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what
you need now, so that you will continue to do God's will. Then you will
receive all that He has promised.
In these two verses two words
really jumped off the page – “patient endurance”. Patience often means
waiting. Endurance means continuing on for a long time doing the same
So I guess you could say patient endurance means “just
hang in there”. It is hard when you want something to happen now.
But God promises we will recieve all He promised in verse 36. He
also promises we will reap a harvest if we do not give up doing good in
If you are waiting on breakthrough today, I would
encourage you to just hang in there with patient endurance. We can trust
God because we know He IS a God who backs up His Word.
A great report of faith and commitment
21 February 2017
In 1 Thessalonians 1:8-10 the Apostle Paul tells of the peoples
great faith. He says their faith is known far and wide. It says…
"And now the word of the Lord is ringing out from you to people
everywhere, even beyond Macedonia and Achaia, for wherever we go we find
people telling us about your faith in God. We don't need to tell them
about it, 9 for they keep talking about the wonderful welcome you gave
us and how you turned away from idols to serve the living and true God.
10 And they speak of how you are looking forward to the coming of God's
Son from heaven--Jesus, whom God raised from the dead. He is the One who
has rescued us from the terrors of the coming judgment."
are a number of important elements in these verses…
turned from serving idols to serving God.
2. They have a vibrant
faith that others have heard about. Their faith and reputation goes
3. They are looking forward to return of Jesus.
4. They are rescued from future judgment because of their faith in
Wouldn’t it be great if people said these things about
our churches? Wouldn’t it be great if our faith reputation went before
Saved by grace to serve
19 February 2017
Ephesians 2: 8-10 says, “God saved you by his grace when you believed.
And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. 9 Salvation
is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can
boast about it. 10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew
in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long
One of the great truths of the Bible is we are saved by
grace thought faith in Christ. This means we become Christians through
God’s unmerited grace, not as the result of any effort, ability,
intelligent choice, or act of service on our part.
Out of love
for God and out gratitude for this free gift from God, we should seek to
help and serve others with kindness, love, and gentleness, and not just
not live as we please.
While no action or work we do can help us
obtain salvation, God’s intention is that our salvation will result in
acts of service. We are not saved merely for our own benefit, but to
serve Christ and build up the church.
God wants to save us. That
is why Christ came and died on the cross for us. God wants us to accept
this and go one and serve Him all the days of our lives. We truly are
saved by grace to serve.
Valentines Day and the love of God
14 February 2017
One Valentines Day we talk about the love we have for one another,
especially those who are couples. On this day we should also remember
the love God has for us. God's love can be seen in a number of ways.
1. In His love for us even when He knows all about us
Psalms 139:1 - O LORD, You have examined my heart and know everything
2. In His amazing hope filled plan He has for our lives
Jeremiah 29:11 - For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD.
"They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and
3. In the way He gave up His Son for us
John 3:16 - "For God loved the world so much that He gave His one and
only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have
4. In the way He is always there for us
Deuteronomy 31:8 - Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the LORD will
personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; He will neither fail
you nor abandon you."
5. In the way He has always loved us
Jeremiah 31:3 - Long ago the LORD said to Israel: "I have loved you,
My people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn
you to Myself.
These are just five of the ways God has showed His great love for us.
Preaching plan for 2017
2 February 2017
In January many of our regular families go away on holidays, so for a
Pastor it is a bit quieter and you can plan your year. One thing I
prayerfully did was plan my preaching schedule for this year.
I have decided to do three series...
- A series on 1, 2 & 3 John - one chapter a week
- Great prayers of the Bible - what was going on, the prayer and
- A series on the Book of James - one chapter a week
For the series on James and John I will also do a companion Bible
study that we can do in the week after the sermon. This will help us to
further build on the message.
All the sermons will be available on the
Jehosaphat’s reaction to pending war
23 January 2017
I was reading 2 Chronicles 20:3-9 this morning. This is where the
people of God are facing attack from the surrounding nations. Three things stood out to me as
- Jehosaphat begged the Lord for wisdom and guidance.
- Jehosaphat called the people to fast. This would focus the
people’s attention of God and their reliance on Him.
- Jehosaphat called everyone together and asked God to save them
in a public prayer.
In his prayer we see He proclaimed God as the only God in heaven, he
said He was their God and the God of their ancestors, that He is
all-powerful and no-one can stand against Him, that the people built the
Temple to honour Him, and that they look to Him for protection and help
as they had in the past.
I love Jehosaphat’s response as leader.
He looked to God for wisdom and help and He prayed publicly so the
people could stand together as one in their reliance and trust in God.
I think Jehosaphat showed a lot of wisdom that we can learn from
today. If we are faced with trouble on all sides we an learn from him
and ask the people to fast, pray and trust in God too.
Wait patiently on the Lord
17 January 2017
Psalm 27:14 says, “Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and
courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord”.
is not always a strong point for us as human beings. We want things now
and we want to get moving.
David who wrote this verse knew what
it was to be patient. At 16 he was anointed as king by Samuel. It didn’t
actually happen until he was 30.
In the time in between he was
chased around the desert by King Saul who was jealous of him. David
looked to the Lord and waited. In God’s time he became king.
us as Christians it can be hard to wait patiently. We live in a world
with microwaves cooking, instant finance on credit cards and the
internet where we can look things up in an instant.
But God is a
God who deals with His people over years, decades and centuries. He is a
God who has an unfolding plan that He alone is in charge of. We may not
see Him working, but He always is.
When it seems like God is
silent and not answering our prayers, we can be assured He is working
away in the background of our lives and putting things in place.
The above verse tells us to be brave and courageous too. At times being
patient does requires us to be brave and courageous when everything else
calls us to act.
It is hard to sit still at times and wait, but
if we look to the example of David, we see that in His good timing God
will work things out in His way. David the shepherd boy became David the
King in God’s time.
If you are waiting on something to fall into
place today, I would encourage you to trust God and wait patiently on
Him. He is working away in the background to bring His plans to pass.
The Priestly Blessing
13 January 2017
I love the blessings from Numbers
6:24-26. It is the one God told Moses to tell Aaron to speak over the
people. It says…
22 Then the Lord said to Moses, 23 “Tell Aaron
and his sons to bless the people of Israel with this special blessing:
24 ‘May the Lord bless you
and protect you. 25 May the Lord
smile on you
and be gracious to you. 26 May the Lord show you his
and give you his peace.’
27 Whenever Aaron and his sons
bless the people of Israel in my name, I myself will bless them.”
This is my prayer for the people of our church. I want God to bless
and protect them. I want God to smile upon them and be gracious to them.
I want God to show them favour and give them peace.
I like the
fact that God says that if we bless people in His name, He Himself will
bless them. As a Pastor I pray this every day for our church members.
Encouraging words and
11 January 2017
I was just talking to someone
over email and they said they had been praying for me today using two
verses. They were…
2 Thessalonians 3:5 – May the Lord lead your
hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and
the patient endurance that comes from Christ.
Ephesians 1:17 –
asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you
spiritual wisdom and insight so that you might grow in your knowledge of
It was a real encouragement for me to hear. Two great verses that
someone is praying for me. I gladly receive it with joy!
there is someone you can pray these verses for today too. Maybe even
God will go before you and handing over the reigns
I was reading Deuteronomy 31 today as a part of my devotions. The
first part of this chapter is where Moses hands over power to Joshua. As
a part of this he tells him God will go with them.
In verse 6 it
says, “So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic
before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He
will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
This is a private
ecouragement to Joshua. It is Moses giving Joshua some final words to
let him know that God is with him and God will go before him.
Moses then calls the people together and says a similar thing in front
of everyone. He makes his private encouragement to Joshua public. He
also fomalises the handover.
In verse 7-8 he says, “7 Then Moses
called for Joshua, and as all Israel watched, he said to him, “Be strong
and courageous! For you will lead these people into the land that the
Lord swore to their ancestors he would give them. You are the one who
will divide it among them as their grants of land. 8 Do not be afraid or
discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be
with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.”
three important things in this passage that can help us today.
- It is important for leaders to know when it is time to handover
to those who are younger to continue God’s work.
- It is important for leaders to encourage those under them in
- It is important for leaders speak publicly to encourage and
proclaim the new leader and what God has called them to do.
History tells us that Joshua led the people of Israel into the
promised land and God went before them. We can learn a lot about
trusting God to go before us, and we can also learn a lot about godly
leadership and the handover of power too.
We can trust God
7 January 2017
believers in Christ we can trust God to do all He says He will do in the
Bible. As it says in Numbers 23:19…
“God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not
change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever
promised and not carried it through?”
What God has said in the
Bible will happen. There were over 300 Old Testament prophecies
fulfilled in Christ. So we know He is true to His word.
said there are over 5000 promises of help in the Bible for us today.
Many millions of people hold on to the promises of God each day and He
Because of God’s past actions, His present help and
His unchanging nature, we can trust Him for the future.
Jesus said He is going to prepare a place for us and coming back for His
own in John 14:1-3, it is a promise we can hold on to. He is also
bringing His rewards with Him for all we have done (Revelation 22:12).
We can trust that all will come to pass as it says in the book of
Revelation. One of the great promises from Revelations is found in
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for
the old heaven and the old earth had disappeared. And the sea was also
gone. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, coming down from God
out of heaven like a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. I heard
a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among His
people! He will live with them, and they will be His people. God Himself
will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there
will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are
Jesus IS coming back with His rewards. There WILL
be a new heaven and new earth. God WILL wipe away every tear from our
eyes and there WILL be no more sorrow and pain. And best of all, God’s
home WILL be among His people.
More blog posts
To view my older posts you can visit my other blog
here. This contains
an archive back to 2006 and has posts on a variety of topics from a
faith and life perspective.
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