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Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Daily Gospel Devotional 2013: The devotions of a pastor

John 21:15-19…

This text is not about Jesus rebuking Peter for his three denials, or establishing Peter as the first pope. Certainly Peter had a unique role in the founding of the church, but this passage is not about giving him the preeminence. What we do see are some principles about being a biblical pastor. When we care for the sheep that our Lord loves, we show our love for the Shepherd.

When Christ asked Peter about loving Him, this tells us that a pastor must have a devotion to Jesus. This is first and foremost. If the man loves Jesus he will lead, protect, and teach His Church. If he is faithful to Christ he will be faithful to His people.

When Jesus told Peter to feed His lambs, this tells us that a pastor must have a devotion to the Bible. The Bible must be his textbook. His central responsibility is to feed people the Word of God because it is what builds them up (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

When Jesus told Peter to tend my sheep, this tells us that a pastor must have a devotion to the people. Pastoral care must be a priority, whether it is visiting the home, visiting the sick, or just being available. It shouldn’t be something he just “delegates to the deacons”.

When Jesus told Peter to feed my sheep, this tells us that a pastor must have a devotion to the church. He will interact with the local community, but his priority is the local church (Ephesians 4:11-16).  Personal evangelism is important for him, but discipling is a must.

When Jesus told Peter to follow me, this tells us that a pastor must have a devotion to personal holiness.  He will be diligent in devotion, leading a godly life, one that is worthy to be emulated (cf. Philippians 3:17 / 1 Thessalonians 1:6 / 2 Thessalonians 3:9 / Hebrews 13:7).   

This isn’t about perfection; it is that a man should have all five of these criteria as the dominant direction in his life. These are some of the same things we should be concerned with for our own lives. One of the most important ways to be discerning as far as evaluating a pastor is concerned is by being diligent to pursue godliness ourselves (2 Peter 3:17-18). 

“Living For Today With An Eye For Tomorrow”©

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At 5:55 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

Remember that this entire devotional series can be ordered in book form @
http://www.lulu.com/shop/jd-hatfield/daily-gospel-devotional/paperback/product-20042375.html

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