“Why Isn’t My Pastor Doing His Job?” or The True Work of a Pastor

There are many misconceptions and misplaced expectations on pastors today which often do great harm to a pastor, his family, the church in which he leads, and even the community in which the church is located.  Some like to think that the pastor should only be a chaplain who merely preaches and visits people, leaving the direction of the church to some other body, maybe the deacons or a church council.  Others think that he is to take care of every need of every church member, placing many of the duties of the deacon upon the pastor.  Many are tempted to think of a pastor as merely an employee of the church who does what some leading body directs him to do.

Yet many of these misconceptions and misplaced expectations can not be found in the Scriptures nor in 1900 years of church history.  So where do these ideas come from?   If we will have healthy churches, healthy Christians, and healthy pastors, we must begin to ask, what should be the basis of our expectations and beliefs about pastors?    In the following article, I present where the expectations of many have went wrong over the last 100 years.  I also argue that the basis of pastoral responsibility must firmly be placed upon two Biblical ideas:

  1. Pastoral Theology, that is, the study of how God acts as a shepherd and then emulating God’s attitude and actions as a pastor.
  2. Biblical commands and examples, that is, what does the Bible say pastors should do and what does the Bible show healthy pastors doing.

The nature of pastoral work is too urgent to find our understanding of it in any other source than the Scriptures which have provided everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3) and that being the case, then they have certainly provided everything we need to understand pastoral ministry.

shepherd

Having established the correct basis for understanding the work of a pastor, in the following article, I then show that the true work of a pastor can be divided into four main responsibilities:

  1. The Ministry of the Word and of Prayer:  The most important work that a pastor can do is to preach God’s Word and to pray for his flock.  All other pastoral responsibilities must be subservient to this one.  Indeed, deacons are to be ordained in every local church so that the pastor may give the main portion of his time to preparing to preach, preaching, sharing the Word in peoples homes, and praying for his people.
  2. The Ministry of Leadership: Although many churches have developed unbiblical practices about who leads the local congregation, the Bible shows that it is indeed, the pastor, or even better, multiple pastors, who guide, direct, and lead the church body.  Any church who desires to obey God’s Word, will not seek to place any body of authority over the pastor outside of the entire local congregation gathered by the Holy Spirit.  In fact, one of the three main terms used in the Scriptures for a pastor is ἐπίσκοπος (episcopos), that is translated, overseer or supervisor.  The pastor is Biblically given the authority to direct and lead over every aspect of church ministry.  There should not be any portion of the church’s work which is off limits to his direction and guidance.
  3. The Ministry of Shepherding:  Jesus is our Good Shepherd who came to us to protect us and provide for us spiritually.   Pastoral ministry is incarnational ministry.  Pastors must be with their people just as Jesus came to be with His people. Therefore, the pastor must seek to spiritually protect his flock by warning them of false teaching and unbiblical thinking.  Indeed, the goal of pastoral counseling is not to be therapeutic, but to help one replace unbiblical thinking with Biblical thinking.  The pastor must provide for His flock through faithful teaching of the Scriptures.  Just as Jesus knows his sheep and his sheep know him, the pastor must seek to know and spend time with his sheep.
  4. The Ministry of Modeling: This ministry is made evident in the moral requirements for pastors in the Scriptures.  Pastors, as well as deacons, are to show their flock what it looks like to follow Jesus.  It is necessary to be taught how to follow but it is also incomparably beneficial to have an example of what it looks like to follow Jesus right before you.

In presenting the following article, although it is a little lengthy and scholarly, I hope that my brother pastors will stop trying to meet the expectations of men and be encouraged to forsake them for the expectations of God.  I also hope that my brothers and sisters in churches all over the western world will learn what can be expected of their pastors and will seek to guard their pastor’s very limited time and resources to do the important work to which God has called him.  Just as the writer of Hebrews says, “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with grief, for this would be unprofitable for you” (Hebrews 13:17).

I now present to you the article discussed above:

 

THE WORK OF A PASTOR

Written by Eric G. Fannin

August 8, 2011

            There is great confusion in today’s churches about the role of the pastor.  This affects the health of pastors, tempting them to take needed time away from their families, from solitude with God, and from having a time of Sabbath rest.  Accordingly, congregants find themselves disappointed with pastors as their expectations go unmet.  David Larsen cites studies showing the pastor-teacher performing 192 different tasks.[1]  Larsen identifies the problem and solution for this.  He states, “The malaise of the church and its ministry must be challenged by a return to our roots in divine revelation and sound doctrine.”[2]

The Bible reveals that every responsibility the pastor pursues should fall into the following four general categories: the ministry of the Word and prayer, pastoral care, leadership, and serving as an example.  These categories are adapted from John Hammett’s Biblical Foundations for Baptist Churches: A Contemporary Ecclesiology.[3]  The Biblical argument for the four categories of pastoral responsibility is based on two axioms.  First, pastoral ministry must be driven by a sound pastoral theology.[4]  Second, pastoral ministry must be grounded in a clear understanding of scriptural directives for the pastoral office.

Therefore, this essay will include: a development of the current problem in the practice of pastoral ministry, an explanation and defense of each axiom presented as the solution, and support for the four categories of the pastoral responsibility.

A Development of the Current Problem in the Practice of Pastoral Ministry

Considering the problem of pastoral ministry today, one must realize that the fads of pastoral ministry often reflect the changes in culture of the time.  Pastoral ministry in America has taken a step in the wrong direction since the early twentieth century.  The Bible and sound doctrine have been minimized as the source of pastoral care.  Psychotherapy and other social sciences were added to supplement Scripture.  This different approach became the source of pastoral counsel to many pastors.  In this kind of ‘pastoral ministry,’ the pastor does not give any directives from the Bible but instead seeks to help the counselee find meaning from within.

In the 1950s, American pastoral ministry was greatly influenced by Seward Hiltner’s A Preface to Pastoral Theology.  In that book, Hiltner describes pastoral theology as, “that branch or field of theological knowledge and inquiry that brings the shepherding perspective to bear upon all the operations and functions of the church and the minister and then draws conclusions of theological order from reflection on these observations.”[5]  The problem with Hiltner’s definition of pastoral theology is that he has the grounding of theology backwards.  He desires to learn about God by observing the “operations and functions” of the pastor and making theological conclusions based on the actions of men.  One’s theology must not be routed in experience which, very often, is errant and fallible.  Theology must instead be firmly established in the infallible, inerrant, and unchanging Word of God.

Hiltner explains his view:

We acknowledge fully that study of Bible and doctrine results in principles that may and must be applied.  We assert further, however, that the process moves the other way also, that adequate critical study of events from some significant perspective makes creative contributions to theological understanding.  Pastoral theology, like any branch of theology, applies some things learned elsewhere.  But it is more than that as well.[6]

Hiltner’s proposal of pastoral theology reveals a very dangerous presupposition of God’s word being insufficient to provide revelation of God and inadequate in providing direction for the church with her offices and functions

Andrew Purves provides three other reasons why a valid view of pastoral ministry is lacking today: First, he notes, “views of human wholeness and competent functioning seem to dominate” the field.[7]  Today’s pastor often sees his work as trying to help his congregants feel whole and function well in society instead of directing their view to Jesus and his sacrifice on the cross for their sins (Heb. 12:1-2).  His second critique is that, “the modern pastoral care movement…is by and large shaped by psychological categories regarding human experience and by symbolic interpretations regarding God.”  He continues, “pastoral theology and, consequently, pastoral practice in the church have become concerned largely with questions of meaning rather than truth, acceptable functioning rather than discipleship, and a concern for self-actualization and self-realization rather than salvation.[8]  Many pastors pursue the faulty premise of trying to help congregants be all that they can be rather than pointing them toward repentance and trust in Jesus for their salvation, sanctification, and maturation in Christ.  Purves’ appraisal is that, “pastoral work today is understood largely in functional terms.”[9]  This means that pastors try to understand pastoral theology by observing what a pastor does and accordingly making conclusions about who God is and what the pastor should be and do based on those observations.      Thomas Oden rightly assesses the importance of a solid grounding in the Bible for pastoral ministry.  He exhorts, “the practice of ministry can better be engendered by solid reflection on its theological and biblical grounding.”[10]

Many of today’s pastors have sunk deeply into the mire of expectations from the world, the church, and even from within himself.  With the recent study of pastoral theology and pastoral ministry which includes new obligations from psychotherapy, other social sciences, and from self-reflection, today’s pastor can easily become sidetracked from his God-given duties revealed in Scripture.   These duties are firmly rooted in the character of God as a shepherd of His people and in the mandates given to the pastor in Scripture.

The Two Axioms: An Explanation and Defense

The first axiom is that a biblical pastoral ministry must be based on a sound pastoral theology.  The pastor must have a clear understanding of how God is a shepherd to in order that he may join God in His work as an under-shepherd, doing the will of the Chief Shepherd.

This is the Biblical idea that Jesus modeled for all pastors to follow.  In John 5:19 Jesus defends His own ministry before his detractors by saying, “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.”[11]   Since Jesus bases His ministry on the Father’s example, then why would the Christian pastor need to add anything outside of the Bible for his ministry?  Jesus did only what He saw the Father doing and what the Father told Him to do.  Therefore the faithful Christian pastor must first of all follow Jesus’ example of basing his role on the example of God.

Purves argues for this same idea:

To insist that God, or, more accurately, the ministry of the Father through the Son and in the Holy Spirit, is the subject matter of pastoral theology means then that there is no faithful content to speaking forth and living out the gospel pastorally apart from knowledge of and sharing in the mission of the God who acts savingly in, through, and as Jesus Christ and in the Spirit precisely as a man for all people.[12]

 

Purves also contends that the only way that a pastor can rightly judge his ministry is to view it through the knowledge of God and God’s mission.[13]  If a pastor’s ministry is not consonant with God and God’s mission, the pastor is not faithfully shepherding God’s flock.

On this issue, Jesus tells His disciples that He has shared the Father’s business with them and by extension His own business.  He teaches, “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business.  Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last” (John 15:15-16a).  The Christian pastor must be about God’s business and He must find out what the Father’s business is by viewing it from the words of Jesus and the example of Jesus.  This business is to bring all people to worship God through redemption by the death of Jesus and by new life in His resurrection through the Holy Spirit.  Reiterating this idea, Oden states, “Christian ministry from the outset has been conceived as a continuation of Christ’s own ministry.  Christ is head of the church.”[14]

The second axiom is that pastoral ministry must be grounded in a clear understanding of scriptural directives for the pastoral office.  Jesus exemplifies this principle in John 8:28 when He says, “…I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me.”  The Biblical pastor will follow this example of doing what the Father teaches him to do.  Jesus did not stop and ask what the psychology of his day said people needed of Him, He learned from His Father what He must do.  The wise pastor will do likewise.

There is a grim warning for pastors who do not seek God’s direction in the book of Jeremiah.  Jeremiah prophesies, “For this is what the LORD says: “At this time I will hurl out those who live in this land; I will bring distress on them so that they may be captured”…The shepherds are senseless and do not inquire of the LORD; so they do not prosper and all their flock is scattered” (10:18 & 21).  Jeremiah directly links the Babylonian Exile of Judah to the shepherds of Judah not inquiring of God.  If the pastor desires to be faithful and spiritually effective, he will seek God’s Word to guide him in his everyday pastoral responsibilities.

In his book Reforming Pastoral Ministry, John Armstrong states the need for this foundation of pastoral ministry all too well, “True authority never comes from within our human persona or from the office (or gifting) itself, but from a divinely given mandate and from a scripturally based message.”[15]  If pastors are to make an eternal difference, they must return to God’s Word to receive their marching orders from God.

After discussing the problem of pastoral ministry today and the solution found in the two axioms it is time to flesh out that solution by discussing what business God would have the faithful pastor spend his time and energy doing.  The reader will notice that each duty of the pastor comes forth out of the two axioms, God’s example and God’s commands.

The Four Categories of Pastoral Responsibility

The first category of ministry for a pastor is the ministry of the Word and of prayer.[16]  In the twenty-third Psalm, David shares that God is his shepherd who has him lie down in green pastures and leads him beside still waters.  God, as shepherd, provides nourishment to his sheep.  This kind of nourishment restores souls according to the psalmist.  In Psalm 19, one learns that the Word of God is the only thing that can restore a soul to God. Therefore, the pastor’s job is to faithfully feed God’s flock the life restoring Word of God.

In Psalm 23 and Ezekiel 34:1-31, God is seen as a shepherd who is a comforter and protector.  He provides good pasture for the sheep and protects them.  The sheep are safe under His watch.  He has His rod and His staff to fend off all who would do them harm.  In the New Testament, John records that Jesus also was a shepherd to His people who provided for them.  As the biblical pastor teaches the Word of God faithfully, he will be defending God’s flock from false teaching, heresy, discouragement, and doubt just as God has done for His people.

When Jesus was about to ascend to Heaven, he established Peter as the leader of the apostles and the church of Jerusalem.  When Jesus ordained him as the first New Testament pastor, He gave him his commission: feed and care for the flock of God (John 21:15-18).  The most important job of the pastor is to feed the sheep.  This can happen in a variety of places but it must happen if the pastor is truly a pastor.  It can happen in the pulpit, over coffee, in a counseling session, or in everyday conversation.  Jesus’ sheep must be fed by His pastors.

One can see the significance of the ministry of the word and of prayer in the early church as well.  There was a problem that arose in Acts 6.  The Grecian Jews were upset because their widows were overlooked in the church’s food distribution while the widows of the Hebraic Jews were given food.  The apostles knew that they could not neglect their other duties to be closely involved, so they gathered the believers together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables.  Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom.  We will turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word” (Acts 6:2-4).

With all of the previous Biblical proof coupled with the qualifications of the overseer to be “able to teach” (1 Tim. 3:2), one must conclude that the Biblical pastor will spend the majority of his time praying for his people and teaching them the Word of God.  Ned Mathews argues for the priority of this responsibility of the pastor above his other responsibilities, he writes, “the pastor, who is also designated in Scripture as elder and bishop, is expected primarily to “feed the flock of God” (1 Pet 5:2 KJV).  Indeed, he must give even more careful attention to this duty because of the presence of those who teach doctrinal error.  To fail at this is inexcusable in a bishop because he is expected to protect the flock from such predators.”[17]  The ministry of the Word and prayer is the most important function of the pastor and must not be sacrificed.

In his book written to pastors, E.M. Bounds admonishes his readers that they must combine prayer with the ministry of the word.  He exhorts, “Preaching that kills is prayerless preaching.  Without prayer, the preacher creates death and not life.  The preacher who is feeble in prayer is feeble in life-giving forces.”[18]  The ministry of the Word and of prayer must always be combined and always be practiced first and foremost by the faithful biblical pastor.

The second category of ministry that a pastor is responsible for is that of pastoral care.[19]  God is a shepherd who cares for his people.  He wants them to have safety and comfort.  In Psalm 23, God is seen as a shepherd who brings comfort and safety to His sheep.  In the Old Testament, Isaiah says of God, “He tends his flock like a shepherd:  He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young” (40:11).  In Jeremiah, God is a shepherd who loves his people “with an everlasting love,” that draws them “with loving-kindness,” and builds them up after they have been scattered (31:3-4).  Jeremiah says that God “will gather them and will watch over his flock like a shepherd.” (31:10).

Jesus goes on to proclaim, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me” (John 10:14).  He knows His sheep intimately.  He is aware of what is going on in their lives and is involved.  Jesus tells of the goal of the shepherd to keep all of his sheep together and safe.  He compares God to that shepherd and says, “your Father in heaven is not willing that any of these little ones should be lost.”  The pastor’s goal should be the same.

In his classic work, The Reformed Pastor, Richard Baxter discusses the pastor’s responsibility to take heed of all of the flock that has been entrusted to him.  He exhorts:

A minister is not to be merely a public preacher, but to be known as a counsellor for their souls, as the physician is for their bodies, and the lawyer for their estates…But as the people have become unacquainted with this office of the ministry, and with their own duty and necessity in this respect, it belongeth to us to acquaint them with it, and publicly to press them to come to us for advice about great concerns of their souls.[20]

A pastor can care for his flock by making certain that each has heard, understood, and accepted the gospel.  He is called to lead the congregation in church discipline for those who have been accepted as members but are living as if they are unsaved.   John Hammett, in his discussion on regenerate church membership says, “I certainly would encourage any pastor attempting changes in these areas to move slowly, building trust with his people and adding to their understanding of biblical truth as he proceeds.  Particularly, church discipline as redemptive rather than punitive should be clearly explained.”[21]

Prime and Begg remind their readers that “Behind all true preaching by shepherds and teachers there are hours of study and preparation linked with deep involvement in people’s lives—an involvement in which there are no regular “working hours”…Shepherding is synonymous with pastoral care:  It is the practical, individual, and spiritual care of Christ’s people as His lambs and sheep.”[22]  Prime and Begg tie together the two functions of the ministry of the Word and prayer with that of pastoral care.  They add that a pastor who visits his congregation regularly enhances his preaching because it helps him understand the struggles of the flock.[23]  The goal of pastoral care is to help the flock grow in faith and the joy of the Lord, therefore, directing congregants to Jesus and the gospel must always pervade a pastor’s care.[24]

The third responsibility of the pastor is leadership.  In Psalm 23 and 80:1, God is portrayed as the shepherd who leads his flock.  In Ezekiel 37:24-26, God appoints the coming Messiah as Shepherd over His people and He will establish the flock, increase their numbers, and live among them.  God is the shepherd who leads his flock and gathers them together in Jeremiah 31:1-10.  In 1 Peter 2:25, Jesus is called the shepherd and overseer of our souls.

Peter writes to pastors and instructs them to, “Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care serving as overseers” (1 Peter 5:2a).  In his discussion of 1 Peter 5:2, Schreiner notes that “serving as overseers” is a participle in Greek that specifies another function of elders (pastors), he states, “As God’s shepherds and leaders they are to oversee the church and superintend it.”[25]

Being a pastor can not be separated from leading.  In the New Testament the terms for pastor, bishop, and elder are used interchangeably.  The pastor is God’s overseer of the flock.  This does not mean that he is the sole leader in the church but it does mean that he is to oversee all of the functions, direction, and leadership of the church.   The pastor’s overseeing leadership must not come from within himself but must come from God, if it does not, the pastor will likely lead by his own selfish ambitions.  Bryant and Brunson teach, “Every team has a captain, and every church is supposed to have a pastor who receives his word from the Lord and then leads the congregation…Leadership is not born nor is it manufactured.  It is given.  In the church, leadership is God-called” [emphasis added].[26]  The pastor must receive his calling, his equipping, and his direction directly from God if he is to be a faithful pastor.

The final responsibility of the pastor is to serve as an example to the flock.  God is a holy God and has always called his people to holiness (Lev. 10:44-45).  The leaders of God’s people are also held to a high standard of personal holiness so they might be an example to the rest of the flock (James 3:1).  Peter instructs fellow-pastors in “being examples to the flock” (1 Pet. 5:3).   This is clearly the purpose of the qualification list for pastors in both 1 Timothy 3:1-13 and Titus 1:9.  Each qualification in these lists is a moral quality that every Christian is called to have except for the teaching and encouraging responsibilities that are necessary for a pastor.

In discussing these biblical qualifications, Mark Dever addresses the church, “Instead of searching for leaders with secular qualifications, we are to search for people of character, reputation, ability to hand the Word, and who display the fruit of the Spirit in their lives.”[27]

Bryant and Brunson emphasize this responsibility, “Whatever else a shepherd and teacher provides for God’s people, he is to give them an example to follow.  God’s people require examples if they are to be effectively shepherded and taught.”[28]     They also go further to say the pastor exemplifying the Christian life is a provision from God to his people showing them how to live.[29]  The faithful pastor will set a good example in his life for God’s flock.

In conclusion, two liberating ideas are revealed: first, that pastors can become more faithful to their calling, their family, and their congregation if they are willing to cut away all of the expectations that have been laid upon them outside of those that fall within the ministry of the Word and prayer, pastoral care, pastoral leadership, and serving as an example.  In doing this, the pastor will be basing His ministry firmly on the example of God as Shepherd and upon God’s directives for His under-shepherds.  Second, the reader will notice that personal (not public) evangelism was not specifically mentioned in this discussion of pastoral responsibilities, this is for two reasons. The first reason is because personal evangelism should easily fall into all four categories of responsibility for the pastor.  Second, personal evangelism is only the responsibility of the pastor more than it is that of the congregant because he is to be an example to them.  The pastor must not be the only person of a congregation sharing the gospel.  If this is the case, there will be very few conversions in a church’s community in comparison to the congregants also being faithful to the commission of the Lord Jesus to share the gospel.

The problem in pastoral ministry of looking for answers in all the wrong places is great in this day and time.  However, a solution exists that is much more simple yet much more faithful and effective to God’s goal for the pastor “to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ” (Eph. 4:12-13).

 

Works Cited

Akin, Daniel L., Allen, David L., and Mathews, Ned L., eds.  Text-Driven Preaching:  God’s Word at theHeart of every Sermon.  Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2010.

Armstrong, John H., ed. Reforming Pastoral Ministry: Challenges for Ministry in Postmodern Times.  Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2001.

Baxter, Richard.  The Reformed Pastor. Nabu Public Domain Reprints, 1656.

Bounds, E. M. Power Through Prayer.  New Kensington, PA: Whitaker House, 1982.

Bryant, James W. and Brunson, Mac. The New Guidebook for Pastors.  Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2007.

Dever, Mark.  Nine Marks of a Healthy Church.  Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2004.

Hammett, John S. Biblical Foundations for Baptist Churches: A Contemporary Ecclesiology.  Grand Rapids, MI:  Kregel Publications, 2005.

Hiltner, Seward.  Preface to Pastoral Theology.  New York: Abingdon Press, 1958.

Larsen, David L.  Pastoral Ministry in the Local Congregation: Caring for the Flock.  Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1991.

Oden, Thomas C.  Pastoral Theology:  Essentials of Ministry.  New York: Harpersanfransisco,

Prime, Derek and Begg, Alistair.  On Being a Pastor: Understanding Our Calling and Work.  Chicago, Moody Publishers, 2004.

Purves, Andrew.  Reconstructing Pastoral Theology: A Christological Foundation.  Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004.

Schreiner, Thomas R. The New American Commentary Volume 37: 1,2 Peter, Jude.  Nashville, TN: Broadman and Holman Publishers,  2003.

White, Thomas, Duesing, Jason, G., Yarnell, Malcolm, B. III, eds.  Restoring Integrity in Baptist Churches.  Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2008.

White, R. E. A Guide to Pastoral Care: A Practical Primer of Pastoral Theology.  London: Pickering & Inglis, 1976.

Footnotes

[1] David Larsen, Pastoral Ministry in the Local Congregation: Caring for the Flock (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1991), p. 15.

[2]Ibid., p. 16

[3]John S. Hammett, Biblical Foundations for Baptist Churches: A Contemporary Ecclesiology. (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2005), pp. 163-166

[4] Andrew Purves,  Reconstructing Pastoral Theology: A Christological Foundation (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004). This book is largely an argument for this first axiom, stated specifically on p. xx.

[5]Seward Hiltner, A Preface to Pastoral Theology. (New York: Abingdon Press, 1958), p. 20.

[6]Ibid, pp 22-23

[7] Andrew Purves,  Reconstructing Pastoral Theology: A Christological Foundation (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004)., p. xix

[8] Ibid., pp. xix-xx

[9] Ibid., p. xx

[10] Thomas C. Oden, Pastoral Theology: Essentials of Ministry (New York: Harperssanfransisco: 1983), p. xii.

[11] All citations from the Bible will be from the New International Version unless noted otherwise.

[12] Andrew Purves,  Reconstructing Pastoral Theology: A Christological Foundation (Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004), p. xix

[13] Ibid.

[14]Thomas C. Oden, Pastoral Theology: Essentials of Ministry (New York: Harperssanfransisco: 1983), p. 59

[15]John H. Armstrong, Reforming Pastoral Ministry: Challenges for Ministry in Postmodern Times. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2001), p. 33.

[16] In this essay “and prayer” was added to John Hammett’s original category of ministry of the word to pick up this important Biblical pastoral function from Acts 6.

[17]Daniel L. Akin, David L. Allen, & Ned L. Mathews, eds., Text-Driven Preaching: God’s Word at the Heart of Every Sermon (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2010), p. 76.

[18] E.M. Bounds, Power Through Prayer (New Kensington, PA: Whitaker House, 1982), p. 30.

[19] John Hammett originally termed this responsibility of the pastor “pastoral ministry.”  It has been changed in this essay in order to avoid confusion since all four responsibilities could be called “pastoral ministry.”  Hammett often refers to pastors as elders and therefore the category “pastoral ministry” is not confused with the other responsibilities in his work.

[20] Richard Baxter.  The Reformed Pastor. (Nabu Public Domain Reprints, 1656), 81-84.

[21] Thomas White, Jason Duesing, , Malcolm Yarnell, III, eds.  Restoring Integrity in Baptist

Churches.  (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2008),  32.

[22] Derek Prime and Alistair Begg, On Being A Pastor: Understanding Our Calling and Work (Chicago, Moody Publishers, 2004), p.150.

[23] Ibid.

[24] Ibid, p. 151.

[25]Thomas R. Schreiner, The New American Commentary Volume 37:1,2 Peter, Jude (Nashville, TN: Broadman and Holman Publishers, 2003), p. 234.

[26] James W. Bryant and Mac Brunson, The New Guidebook for Pastors (Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2007), p. 73.

[27] Mark Dever, Nine Marks of a Healthy Church. (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books,  2004), 231-232.

[28]Ibid., p. 36.

[29] Ibid.

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