Pastoral Authority (Part 1)Submitted by Pastor Chad Wagner on Wednesday, April 8, 2015.
Pastoral Authority I. Authority- 1. a. Power or right to enforce obedience; moral or legal supremacy; the right to command, or give an ultimate decision. II. The derivation of pastoral authority. 1. All authority originates from God, and is given by God (Rom 13:1-2). 2. Power - II. As a person, body, or thing. 6. a. One who or that which is possessed of or exercises power, influence, or government; an influential or governing person, body, or thing; in early use, one in authority, a ruler, governor. 3. God gave Jesus authority to execute judgment when He came in the flesh (Joh 5:27). A. This was evident to the people whom Jesus taught by the manner in which He taught (Mar 1:22). B. When Jesus was resurrected and assumed the throne of David, ALL power and authority was given unto Him (Mat 28:18). 4. Because all power and authority was given to Christ, He gave delegated some of His authority to His ministers whom He ordained (Mat 28:19; Joh 15:16). A. Jesus spoke of the giving of this authority to His ministers by way of a parable (Mar 13:34). B. The authority that Jesus' ministers were given was demonstrated by the fact that they taught like He did (Act 4:13). C. Paul affirmed that it was the Lord that had given him and his fellow ministers that authority (2Co 10:8). D. Paul enjoined the men which he ordained to exercise the authority which they had been given (Tit 2:15). 5. Therefore those who resist the God-given authority of a man set over them resist the authority of God (Rom 13:2; Luk 10:16). A. Despise v. 1. trans. To look down upon; to view with contempt; to think scornfully or slightingly of. B. Contempt n. 1. The action of contemning or despising; the holding or treating as of little account, or as vile and worthless; the mental attitude in which a thing is so considered. (At first applied to the action, in modern use almost exclusively to the mental attitude or feeling.) III. The office of the pastor. 1. There are many names given for the office of a pastor, which include: A. A pastor (Eph 4:11). i. Pastor - Etymology L. pastor-em shepherd, lit. ‘feeder, giver of pasture’, 1. A herdsman or shepherd. 2. A shepherd of souls; one who has the spiritual oversight over a company or body of Christians, as bishop, priest, minister, etc.; spec. the minister in charge of a church or congregation, with particular reference to the spiritual care of his ‘flock’. ii. Peter was one such man (Joh 21:15-17 c/w 1Pe 5:1-2). iii. The elders of the church at Ephesus were likewise (Act 20:17 c/w Act 20:28). iv. As a pastor, the pastor spiritually feeds the church. B. An elder (Tit 1:5; Act 14:23; Act 20:17 c/w 28; 1Ti 5:17; 1Pe 5:1-2). i. Elder - B. n. An elder person, lit. and fig. 1. a. A parent [cf. mod.G. eltern pl.]; an ancestor, forefather; hence, in wider sense, a predecessor, one who lived in former days. 4. a. In ecclesiastical use. ...the title given to a certain order or class of office-bearers in the early Christian Church.... ii. As the elder, the pastor is to be viewed as the patriarch of the church. C. A bishop (1Ti 3:1-2; Tit 1:7; Php 1:1). i. Bishop - 1. A spiritual superintendent or overseer in the Christian Church. ii. Superintendent - 1. a. An officer or official who has the chief charge, oversight, control, or direction of some business, institution, or works; an overseer. iii. Oversight - 1. a. Supervision, superintendence, inspection; charge, care, management, control. iv. Control - n. 1. a. The fact of controlling, or of checking and directing action; the function or power of directing and regulating; domination, command, sway. v. As the bishop, the pastor is a spiritual supervisor of the church who checks and directs its action. D. An overseer (Act 20:28). i. Overseer - 1. a. One who oversees or superintends, a supervisor; esp. one whose business it is to superintend a piece of work, or a body of workmen; a superintendent (of workmen, slaves, convicts, etc.). ii. As the overseer, the pastor oversees and superintends the membership of the church. E. A steward (Tit 1:7; Luk 12:42; 1Co 4:1-2). i. Steward - 1. a. An official who controls the domestic affairs of a household, supervising the service of his master's table, directing the domestics, and regulating household expenditure; a major-domo. ii. As the steward, the pastor has the control of the domestic affairs of the church, including a final say concerning its finances. F. A minister (1Co 4:1; Act 26:16; Rom 15:16; Eph 3:7; Col 1:23; 1Th 3:2; 1Ti 4:6). i. Minister - 1. a. A servant, attendant. 2. a. One who acts under the authority of another; one who carries out executive duties as the agent or representative of a superior. ii. As the minister, the pastor is a servant of the church and a representative of Jesus Christ who carries out the executive duties which Christ gives him in His word. 2. Notice how all these are titles for the same office and are used interchangeably in the Bible. A. A pastor: i. A pastor is an overseer (Act 20:28). ii. A pastor is an elder (Act 20:17 c/w Act 20:28; 1Pe 5:1-2). B. An elder: i. An elder is an overseer (Act 20:17 c/w Act 20:28). ii. An elder is a bishop (Tit 1:5-7). iii. An elder is a pastor (1Pe 5:1-2). C. A bishop: i. A bishop is an elder (Tit 1:5-7). ii. A bishop is an overseer and a steward (see definitions). D. An overseer: i. An overseer is an elder (1Pe 5:1-2). ii. An overseer is a pastor (Act 20:28). iii. An overseer is a bishop and steward (see definitions). E. A steward: i. A steward is a bishop (Tit 1:7). ii. A steward is an elder (Tit 1:5-7). iii. A steward is a minister (1Co 4:1). iv. A steward is a bishop and an overseer (see definitions). F. A minister is a steward (1Co 4:1). G. Therefore the man given the charge of a church is its pastor, elder, bishop, overseer, steward, and minister. IV. Church members are commanded by God to submit to the authority of the man whom God has made their overseer. 1. Pastors have the rule over their congregations (Heb 13:7). A. Rule - n. I. 1. a. A principle, regulation, or maxim governing individual conduct. B. Those who have the rule over the church are those who have spoken unto them the word of God (the pastor) (Heb 13:7). C. Their faith is supposed to be an example to be followed (Heb 13:7 c/w 1Ti 4:12). D. Church members are to consider the conversation of their pastor and follow it (Heb 13:7). E. Consider - v. 1. To view or contemplate attentively, to survey, examine, inspect, scrutinize. F. Conversation - n. 1. The action of living or having one's being in a place or among persons. Also fig. of one's spiritual being. G. This is a grave responsibility for a pastor. To whom much is given, much is required (Luk 12:48). 2. Pastors are to be obeyed and submitted to (Heb 13:17). A. Obey - v. 1. trans. a. To comply with, or perform, the bidding of; to do what one is commanded by (a person); to submit to the rule or authority of, to be obedient to. B. Submit - v. I. 1. refl. and intr. To place oneself under the control of a person in authority or power; to become subject, surrender oneself, or yield to a person or his rule, etc. C. A fundamental reason for obeying and submitting to a pastor is because he watches for your souls (Heb 13:17). i. Watch - v. II. 9. a. To keep under surveillance (a prisoner, a besieged army) in order to prevent escape or rescue; to set an armed watch upon (a place, road, passage). b. To guard (a dead body, goods). 13. a. To exercise protecting vigilance over; to tend (a flock). 1526 Tindale Luke ii. 8 There were...shepherds... watching their flocke by nyght. ii. A pastor (A herdsman or shepherd) is supposed to know the state of his flock (Pro 27:23). iii. God gave his prophets of old the same charge (Eze 3:17). D. The pastor watches for the souls of his flock because he must give an account of them to God (Heb 13:17 c/w Luk 16:1-2). i. A true pastor will watch for his flock and will instruct and rebuke as necessary to ensure that the sheep are not going astray; therefore it is in the best interest of the sheep to obey and submit to his authority. ii. An hireling will not watch for the sheep, but will rather flee when he sees trouble coming (Joh 10:12-13). 3. A position of authority and oversight is a difficult and lonely position. A. You've heard it said, "It's lonely at the top." B. The pastor who is not a lonely man is a fool.
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