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May 14, 2021 2:00 am
What are the characteristics of a shepherd who serves God's flock, and what are his responsibilities? In the message "Profile of a Good Shepherd," Skip considers the microscope that Peter placed himself and fellow shepherds under.
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You will have in Scripture.
Shepherds that are put in a good light. Because of their care sheep on the other hand, in the Bible are not always put in the greatest of life. Isaiah 53 all we like sheep have gone astray. All gone our way back. The only time she replacing favorable light is when they're placed under the good supervision of a good Shepherd. God always had a plan for his flock church to grow and build his kingdom connect with Skip hi to today as he shares with God in vision when he charged shepherds to serve his people. That's you, but before we begin.
Did you know you can get more insightful teachings from Scripture on his TV show yourself to Nan for my program connect with Skip Heitzigs, take on the health on channel on Saturdays at 4:30 PM Mountain time or watch it on TBN on Sundays at 5:30 AM Eastern. Be sure to check your local listings. Now we want to let you know about a resource that will ignite a deeper desire in you to pursue Jesus who comes to mind when you think of right godly women. Probably Jesus is mother Mary. Maybe Ruth, the unlikely ancestor of Christ.
What about you here's a New York Times best-selling author Eric the taxes clearly God created us male and female in his image is leaning into who we are as women for women that is going to show God's greatness.
Discover how the lives of some of the greatest women in history can show you the path to true greatness in your own life as a woman made in God's image, that's what you'll find in this month's inspiring resource by Eric metathesis everyone the seven women. I think you see a different side of femininity seven women is our thank you for your gift of $35 or more today to help connect more people to God's word and right now will also send you a special bonus resource pastor Skip six message CD collection on prominent women from Scripture visit connectwithskip.com/offer to get online securely or call 800-922-1888. Okay, first Peter chapter 5 for today study so much joy Skip Heitzigs. You will probably never find a sports team that has as its mascot, a sheep I thinking. Football now right Denver sheep Nono Denver Broncos St. Louis sheep Nono Rams right move or talk of strong animals, not sheep when it comes to coinage. You will find a sheep on a coin in this country. You might in New Zealand, but here you find the following goal but not sheep and when it comes to protecting your personal property. Have any of you ever owned a guard sheep have you ever seen a sign beware of lamb know because there docile, even timid creatures, not only are they timid, they require care.
In fact, they require Shepherd was a woman who was just sick and tired of all those blonde jokes and so she decided to die her hair black sheep died a black and she was out for a drive in the country and her car. She slowed it down because the shepherd was directing a flock of sheep across the road so she stopped and she rolled her window down as she yelled out to the shepherd. Hey, if I can guess exactly how many she bring her flock. Can I have one of them said sure, take a stab at it.
She said you have 257 sheep when he stepped back, amazed at her advanced intelligence because that's exactly how many he had and so you said we are free to take one so she took month put in the car was about to drive off and heard a knock on the glass. It was the shepherd, and he leaned in and he said hey if I can guess what color your hair really is. Can I have my dog back. Yeah, I guess, sheep and dogs need a good Shepherd when you go to the Scripture. You often notice that the figure of a shepherd is one of the most heartwarming pictures of the relationship God has with his people to picture of care.
It's a picture of diligence, any passage of Scripture is driven by the verbs that are in that section of Scripture and in verses one through four. There is a verb that all of this section revolves around and I draw your attention to it. In verse two. The verb is the first word shepherd shepherd the flock of God which is among you.
The Lord is often seen as a shepherd in the Bible. Psalm 23 the Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. Psalm 100. We are the sheep of his pasture where the people of his hand. And so you you will have been Scripture shepherds that are put in a good light. Because of their care sheep on the other hand, in the Bible are not always put in the greatest of light. Isaiah 53 all we like sheep have gone astray.
We've all gone our own way.
In fact the only time sheep replacing favorable light is when they're placed under the good supervision of a good Shepherd because sheep get lost easily.
They do not navigate well they do not find their way on their own are not like dogs or pigeons or go back to where the game from there lost that one professor of philosophy. Tongue-in-cheek said the existence of sheep is evidence against the theory of evolution.
There's no way she could have survived that process, you know, survival of the fittest. They're not. They require constant oversight constant leading constant rescue, constant cleaning or they will die a great book written by a shepherd several years ago includes these were cheap.
Just do not take care of themselves. The require more than any class of livestock and less attention and meticulous care.
The behavior of sheep in human beings is similar in many ways our mass mind or mob instinct our fears and timidity our stubbornness and stupidity are all parallels of profound importance. And yet Peter addresses the people of God. In chapter 5 is a flock know he does not do that to put anyone down but simply to raise the bar of integrity, saying anyone who's gonna be a leader of God's flock has to meet certain criteria. Let's look at chapter 5, beginning in verse one, the elders, who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed. Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion, but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly Norris being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.
Paul has a lot to say to shepherds, pastors, elders, Peter has three main things to say to them. Three main responsibilities or qualifications. The first is relationship. The second is calling the third is desire. Those three things relationship calling desire. Humans have a personal relationship with Christ a practical gifting to serve Christ in a powerful desire to please Christ. So let's look at them. Let's unpack these things. We only have four verses, but here's Peter's words. Thus the Lord's words to these leaders in inverse wanted to nurse three words I want you to notice with me.
I want to explain them to you. I want to. As I said, unpack the first is the word elder. He writes to elders as himself being an elder. That word is the Greek word press.
Botero costs we get the term Presbyterian from it was first to somebody who is mature, often older and wiser. It's a term that is borrowed from the Old Testament brought into the New Testament, there were the elders of the children of Israel.
The second word I like you to notice is in verse two. It's the word overseers to different word app to Skip we get the word Episcopal from that of Bishop and overseer and the third is the word shepherd also found in verse two, though it is used in its verb form here second person plural imperative verb is often used in a noun form shepherd, and the word in Greek would deployment now is what I want you to know all three of those words describe one person same person whether the word Presbytery Ross elder Episcopal asked Bishop or play main shepherd is you speaks of one individual. Three different words to describe one person why the term elder describes his maturity.
The term Bishop describes his responsibility in the term pastor describes his ministry he feeds sheep so he speaks to elders as a fellow elder I love this about Peter. Peter doesn't come off as somebody superior he doesn't say I Peter, the great apostle says I'm a fellow elder I come to you as one of you. I imagine at that time Peter become so famous in the early church. One of the few surviving original company of men that were with Jesus is that pastors and leaders everywhere revered him but he comes not as one of the three most intimate friends, but as a fellow elder and one who had a personal relationship with the suffering and the risen Christ. Notice the wording, he says, and a witness retailer witnesses in the Bible. When this is somebody who sees and hears something and then tells others what he is seen and heard all the witnesses he was personally with Christ. That's his past tense. I was there when he suffered, but now looking to the future, he says, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed. So I'm like you, I was personally with Jesus and watched him suffer like you I'm waiting for him to return. But what I want you to notice overall is that Peter writes as one who had a personal encounter. Thus a personal relationship with Christ. That's the first mark of a good Shepherd is a man who personally walks with God and is growing in that walk with God in a relationship with Christ is real and being cultivated growing that person has a base from which to share and to minister to others back. I'll say it this way as the shepherd goes, so go the sheep as the shepherd grows so grow the sheep of the shepherd is growing cheaper growing if the shepherd is stagnating. The sheep will be stagnated, which means church leaders should be always growing in their personal lives, their spiritual walks their marriages, their gifts that they use and their knowledge all summed up in second Peter chapter 3 verse 18 but grow in the grace and in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ betrayed her story puts it all together. There was a man who was among one of the passengers that was in a flight flying in different cities in California.
They were in Sacramento. They landed in Sacramento there was a flight delay and the stewardess gets on the intercom and she said ladies and gentlemen will be delayed in this airport for at least 45 minutes or more, and you have the freedom to get up and going to the terminal and will reimburse after a period of time. Everybody gets up off the goes off the plane for one man stay seated. He was blind for seeing-eye dog was in the seat in front of underneath the seat.
Evidently the pilot of that flight knew the passenger must've flown on pilots flight before the pilot gets up goes over to the man is blind. It is called combining Keith he says wouldn't to be at this airport for about an hour you want you can go out and come back is not. I don't need all stay seated, but my dog would probably like to be walked by the said no problem I'll take care of it now want you to imagine in your mind's eye. What would've been like to be a passenger in the terminal when your pilot comes out with the seeing-eye dog right I just add a little bit of fun.
The pilot he put his sunglasses on his walk out into the term, what would you have thought that's what they thought their reaction. Most of them went to the counter to switch flights someone to switch airlines altogether. Why why they react the way it simple. They had no desire to entrust their lives to a man who couldn't see to fly is my point.
Men who don't love their wives or don't raise their children in a godly fashion or don't know their Bibles have no business flying God's plane filled with God's people.
He has to see to fly the plane so he needs his own personal relationship with the living resurrected Christ you say I know that everybody knows that really few years ago I was stunned, but delighted when one of the people who came forward at an altar call the Christmas Eve service humbly told me that he had been up and elder in the church for 25 years and never had a personal relationship with Jesus. Until that night. I was mystified but delighted. Better late than never personal relationship with Christ. Here's the second practical gifting to serve Christ. Verse two he says shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion, but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly know as being lords over those entrusted to you.
Notice the terms entrusted. It's as if God says I will entrust you I trust you to take my flock and be a steward over not being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock is long short shepherd must be called. There has to be a calling. I know that's a mystical kind of a term like you waiting around for a voice to be heard. How do you know if you have a calling. It's pretty simple, as always it gifting that accompanies the calling you can tell if a person is called by the fruit. The person is called to be an evangelist gets was can happen people going to come to Christ. Nobody comes a Christ and he says I'm an evangelist. Okay, I wonder about that. If you are gifted are called to be a teacher to be gifted to be a teacher.
People will be taught. They will grow in their walks, so there will be an accompanying gift mix along with the calling when Paul announced to the church of Ephesus. Those gifted individuals that had been given to the congregation.
He said there are apostles and prophets evangelist and pastor teachers, for the equipping of the saints of the work of the ministry would you notice the phrase found both in verse one and verse two. It's a phrase among you in verse 20 speaks to the elders who are among you. You being the flock in verse two he says shepherd the flock, which is among you. Now he speaks to shepherds who have the flock of God among them. But the term among you is an important term of practical accountability. If you're gifted others among you will recognize they will know what they will ratify. This is why seminary alone is not sufficient hermeneutics and homiletics courses are fine but they are not enough. You need more you can teach techniques you can't transmit gifting only God can do that. Some people join ministry or want to be a leader in a group because they just want to be known as the leader they want people to notice them. They want the plot incentives people. No wonder James use these words. Let not many of you presume to be teachers for you will receive the stricter judgment is it's gotta be given to you by the Lord when you're among people.
They will recognize God's hand on you both spoke to the Ephesian elders and he said take care of the flock of God among whom the holy spirit has made you overseers in other words, do not touch the ministry unless the Holy Spirit gives it to Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the preacher preachers.
I consider them said this, all are not called to labor in word and doctrine were to be elders or to exercise the gift of the bishop nor should all aspire to such works. Since the gifts necessary are nowhere promised to all but those should dip themselves to such important engagements who feel like the apostle that they have received this ministry. No man may intrude into the sheepfold as an under shepherd.
He must have an eye to the chief Shepherd and wait his back and commanded if he does not so but he rushes into the sacred office. The Lord will say of him and others like him.
I sent them not. Neither did I command and therefore they shall not profit this people at all saith the Lord, quoting Jeremiah 23 SPF practical gifting to serve Christ into areas. Generally speaking, Peter brings up the rest of it gifting to feed sheep and a gifting to lead sheet to the first one to feed the sheep that's in the works. Shepherd verse two. Shepherd the flock of God. The old King Jimmy says feed the flock of because the term shepherd, and the term feed were part and parcel of the same calling the same nurturing one of the primary callings of the shepherdess to feed sheep Jesus after the resurrection. As Peter three times do you love me. Yes, Lord, I love you. Jesus said, feed my sheep sometimes translated tender care for feed my sheep which efforts to defeat sheep the Lord is my shepherd, David said he leads me into green pastures.
My shepherd provides me food.
One of the main tasks of a pastor I see our position as being a spiritual chef.
I member Kevin Hallman sit down for me and sometimes I discard random leaving things I member my mom saying I slave over a hot stove all day for you. I'll never forget that. And I think that's what I'm called to do slave over stove of Scripture that takes time to prepare a meal that is palatable and edifying and understandable, through which a person can grow listener a pastoral work listening to is one who has fought through the truth in the presence of the Holy Spirit. And that takes time.
The words of Paul to Timothy were these be diligent or in the old translation study to show yourselves approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth be prepared.
Study hard, of always love the story of the Native American man, an older man went to church one Sunday and hurt his preacher. It was a Sunday when the preacher didn't study and prepare for the message. So we try to cover up his lack of preparation by being bombastic and pounding the pulpit and you know speaking loudly and in and running back and forth, and putting on a pep rally show. In fact, he was flock defendants bitten in this moving around and some people thought he preached up a storm. That's what they said he preached up a storm nasty old Native American gentlemen afterwards would you think of the sermon. He said I have six words high wind big thunder. No rain, high wind big thunder but where's the rain was the nourishment boy. He preached up a storm. But where's the rain. This is why God speaking through Ezekiel, the prophet said prophesy against my shepherds for should not the shepherds feed the flock's I'm a real stickler about this is some of you may anticipate and already know, I don't believe a pastor should just get bits and pieces of the Bible short series. In this short miniseries on that little bit of the New Testament Made Little Revelation. I Believe You Want to Get Strong. See You Teach Them through the Books of the Bible All about Height, with the Message from His Series Blocks Now to Skip to Share How You Can Keep This Broadcast Going Strong Connecting You and Many Others to the Lord Because of Christ's Work on the Cross Were Part of God's Family and His Brothers and Sisters in Christ. It's Important to Encourage One Another in Our Faith. That's What We Aim to Do Is We Connect Listeners like You with Biblical Truth and When You Give a Gift, You Help Your Spiritual Family around the World Grow in Their Faith. Here's How You Can Do That Today. Give Us a Call at 800-922-1888 to Give a Gift 800-922-1888 Organ firstname.lastname@example.org/donate. That's connectwithskip.com/donate your support is vital to continue encouraging you and many others.
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