Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
Email Preach Him with Dr. Jim

The Office of the Pastor
1 Thes. 5:12-14

12 And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, 13 and to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. Be at peace among yourselves. 14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. NKJV
 

Introduction
I try to let the Lord lead me in what I preach. Tonight I think the Lord is leading me to preach a sermon about the office of Pastor.

I have never preached a sermon just like this before and I have never heard a sermon like this. So why preach it? As I said I believe God wants me to preach this message.

I believe Change is coming to Liberty Baptist Church. I believe the changes will be for the best of the total church membership. Some of us will have to make some adjustments. Make sure you stay sensitive to the authority of God and His Word.

Some of the changes are coming because of growth.

1.    I Believe Spiritual Growth Is Coming.
        a.    It will come in steps of faith.

2.    I Believe Numerical Growth Is Coming.
        a.    It will come in steps of faith.

3.    I Believe Financial Growth Is Coming.
        a.    It will come in steps of faith.
 

Change Caused from Growing Pains May Happen.

1.    Pain of My Turf.
        a.    Some may think the job they have is theirs and not the churches to vote about.
        b.    Some may think because they have had a position for years not one else can offer any
                suggestions.
        c.    I want to make it clear I have not seen this yet. But these thoughts may come.

2.    Pain of New Ways.
        a.    Did you ever hear the seven last words of the church? I have only heard them here as
                Jack Sadler has jokingly and in a humorous way stated them.

        b.    The words are: "We Never Did it that Way Before.

3. Pain of New People.
        a.    Some mew people may come that you don't want to have over for supper.
        b.    You may like them at a distance but not up close.
        c.    Remember Christ dies for them.

Change In Recognition of the Office of Pastor.

    1.    The Pastor is not just someone to occupy the Pulpit.

    2.    A Pastor is a leader of the Church. Biblically he is THE Leader of the Church.

    3.    I am not a dictator and I don't want to become a dictator. I do want respect for my
            suggestions. I expect you to follow when I lead.

    4.    The Scripture tells us the pastor is to "oversee the ministry of the church.

    5.    I do not like surprises. Let me know in advance of actions you want to make.

    6.    Check with the pastor before running in one direction or another. We need church and
            Biblical authority.
 
 
 

1.    The . . Recognition of the Office of Pastor. v 12 



        "And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you,"

A.    Recognize the . . Right of the Pastor. v 12 a
        "And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, . . . "

        1.    Where does the Right of Pastor Come From?
                a.    The Call of God. 1 Ti 2:7
                "for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle--I am speaking the truth in Christ and
                not lying--a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. KJV

                2 Ti 1:11 to which I was appointed a preacher, an apostle, and a teacher of the Gentiles.

B. Recognize the . . Rule of the Pastor. v 12 b
        ". . . and are over you in the Lord and admonish you,"

        1.    What does over you mean?
        2.    There is a sense of spiritual and organizational rule.     Hebrews 13:17 & 24;
            17 Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those
            who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be
            unprofitable for you. 24 Greet all those who rule over you, and all the saints. Those from Italy
            greet you. NKJV

    3.    We have a good and Growing Pre-School Ministry.
            a.    The Pre-School Needs To Be One Part of the Church.
                    This is not a Pre-School Church.

    4.    We have a good and Growing Children's Ministry.
            a.    The Children's Ministry Needs To Be One Part of the Church.
                    This is not a Children's Church.

    5.    We have a good and Growing Youth Ministry.
            a.    The Youth Ministry Needs To Be One Part of the Church. This is not a Youth Church.

    6.    We have a good and Growing Adult Ministry.
            a.    The Adult Ministry Needs To Be One Part of the Church.
                    This is not an Adult Ministry Church.

    7.    We are all of these Ministries combined.

    8.    Who Is Supposed to oversee these ministries? 1 Pet. 5:2 Shepherd the flock of God which is
            among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but
            eagerly; NKJV

Illustration
Have you ever heard an animal with two or more heads does not function well? We all believe Christ is the head of the Church. He has called pastors as His undershepherds

Application

The church that does well recognizes well the office of Pastor.
 
 
 

2 The . . Reward of the Office of Pastor. v 13 



        "and to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. Be at peace among yourselves.

A.    The Reward of . . Esteem. v 13 a
        "and to esteem them very highly in love. . . "

    1.    You are a loving church and I am a beneficiary.

B. The Reward of . . Energy v 13 b
        ". . . for their work's sake." Be at peace among yourselves.

    1.    A Pastor I to be a Man of Energy.
    2.    A very busy and productive pastor will be rewarded.     1 Ti 5:17 Let the elders who rule well
            be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine.

        a.    Double honor may mean double pay.
        b.    It is true that the more successful pastors are rewarded more in financial ways.

Illustration
Several years ago a few pastors were talking about another pastors salary package of $23,000.00. One man in the group said why I only make $10,000, I said to my self you are not worth that, and he wasn't. He closed the church he was pastoring as members made a stream out the back door.

Numerical growth is not always a sign of Gods blessing but many times it is. I want spiritual growth to be first for us but as it occurs here I believe it will show in numerical growth also.
 

C.    The Reward of . . Equanimity. v 13 c
        ". . . Be at peace among yourselves."

Equanimity (¶"kw-n¹m"¹-t¶, µk"w-) n. The quality of being calm and even tempered; composure.

    1.    A Church at peace in Pastoral and Congregational relations is on it's way to being a healthy
            church

    2.    Now let me say I think you are "right on" in this matter.
    3.    This church has a reputation of treating a pastor well.
    4.    This must continue. We must be at peace.
            a.    Notice this story from Scripture.         1 Sam 26:7-12 7 So David and Abishai came to the people by night; and there Saul lay sleeping within the camp, with his spear stuck in the ground by his head. And Abner and the people lay all around him. 8 Then Abishai said to David, "God has delivered your enemy into your hand this day. Now therefore, please, let me strike him at once with the spear, right to the earth; and I will not have to strike him a second time!" 9 And David said to Abishai, "Do not destroy him; for who can stretch out his hand against the LORD's anointed, and be guiltless?" 10 David said furthermore, "As the LORD lives, the LORD shall strike him, or his day shall come to die, or he shall go out to battle and perish. 11 The LORD forbid that I should stretch out my hand against the LORD's anointed. But please, take now the spear and the jug of water that are by his head, and let us go." 12 So David took the spear and the jug of water by Saul's head, and they got away; and no man saw it or knew it or awoke. For they were all asleep, because a deep sleep from the LORD had fallen on them. NKJV

This passage tells of David's attitude toward God's anointed King. The pastor is an anointed man of God for the office of pastor.

Application

God will reward His Faithful Pastors.     1 Peter 5:4 and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away. NKJV
 
 
 

3 The . . Requirements of the Office of the Pastor. v 14 



    Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all.

A.    Requirement of . . Companionship. v 14 a
        "Now we exhort you, brethren, . . . "

    1.    The Message of one Called Man to Brothers.
        a.    It can be a beautiful Companionship.

B.    Requirement of . . Cautioning. v 14 b
        ". . .warn those who are unruly,

    1. Warning of Caution to the People
    2. Warning of Caution to the Pastor.

Jas 3:1 My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment.

1 Co 9:16 For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel! NKJV

C.    Requirement of . . Comforting. . v 14 c
        ". . . comfort the fainthearted,. . . "

    1.    We have a ministry of comforting.
    2.    The Comforted are to grow into the ministry of being ones who can comfort.

2 Cor 1:3-4 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. NKJV
 

D.    Requirement of . . Cradling. v 14 d
    ". . . uphold the weak, . . . "

    1.    Some times we are to cradle a brother or sister.
    2.    Some times we may need to be cradled.
    3.    The Pastor is to help the weak become strong.

E. Requirement of . . Patience. . v 14 e
    ". . . be patient with all."

    1.    Patience is a gift from God.
    2.    Most of us Need more patience
    3.    I am very impatient with inanimate things.

Illustration
I can get impatient with a stapler or a ball point and want to throw them in the waste can. You see I think I am Lord over them.

The Lord told me one day you are not Lord over anything and these items might just help you to become more patient.
 

Application
Why am I preaching this sermon tonight? I believe the Lord told me to preach it. I do not know why in every detail.

Generally speaking every church needs to hear the teachings of scripture on this subject. I need to be lifted up in prayer regularly. If I am the pastor God wants me to be I must have spiritual strength. That comes through my prayers and your prayers for me and the office of Pastor.

The . . Recognition

    The . . Reward

        The . . Requirements

            of the Office of Pastor.

Note: After the preaching of this sermon it became very clear why God wanted it preached. A problem arose and I confronted the person who had step away from church and pastoral authority. I turned the matter over to the Lord with a peace He alone can give. The problem was resolved without a major incident in our church. To God Be The Glory.  Do other problems lurk in the vestibule of someone's mind?   Perhaps.   This scripture passage and other need to be studied in these days.