The Myth of Pastoral Authority (Shepherd’s Echo)

[The Shepherd’s Echo is a reposting of a previously published TheShepherdsPen.]

Buried deep within the pages of the letter to the Hebrews is a verse which is all too often overlooked in its significance…Yet, in its brevity, it describes the pastoral relationship between the shepherd and the sheep, the pastor and the congregants. At one extreme, it touches on pastoral authority, at the other, it affirms the sobering shepherding responsibility of the pastor.

The verse is Hebrews 13:17, “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.”

Continue reading “The Myth of Pastoral Authority (Shepherd’s Echo)”

The Happy Prophet

Don’t get me wrong, I love serving in ministry, but the status of “happy” does not normally dot my skyline. Like others in the pastorate, I have my days. I have my ups…and my downs. I am not depressed or angry. I do not lack motivation, or clarity of purpose, and at times in little bursts along the way, there is some joy. But, happy? Mmmm, not so much.

I would contend, that across the many pages of Scripture, one would be hard-pressed to locate a “happy” prophet. How about Moses? Not exactly. Jeremiah? Mmm, No! He was the “weeping” prophet. Jonah? On every level, just No! Continue reading “The Happy Prophet”

The Myth of Pastoral Authority

Buried deep within the pages of the letter to the Hebrews is a verse which is all too often overlooked in its significance…Yet, in its brevity, it describes the pastoral relationship between the shepherd and the sheep, the pastor and the congregants. At one extreme, it touches on pastoral authority, at the other, it affirms the sobering shepherding responsibility of the pastor.

The verse is Hebrews 13:17, “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.” Continue reading “The Myth of Pastoral Authority”