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Blog - Separated Unto the Gospel - A Window Into the Life of a Pastor
Today I want to give you a peek into the life of a pastor. This is not to preach myself (2Co 4:5), nor to get pity or sympathy, but rather to help you to "know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord" (1Th 5:12). Solomon wrote in Proverbs 18:1 that, "Through desire a man, having separated himself, seeketh and intermeddleth with all wisdom." That is the life of a minister of Jesus Christ in a nutshell. Through his desire to learn and teach the word of God and to serve God and His people, he voluntarily separates himself and seeks and immerses himself in the word of God, which is wisdom (Pro 2:6; Deu 4:6). Paul wrote of himself that he was, "separated unto the gospel of God" (Rom 1:1). This may sound insignificant until one defines some words. Separated ppl. - 1. Set apart or asunder, disjoined, withdrawn (OED) Separate v. - 1. a. To put apart, set asunder (two or more persons or things, or one from another); to disunite, disconnect, make a division between. (OED) For a minister, reading these definitions will likely make his eyes wet. When a pastor (or any Christian for that matter) was first converted and joined the church, he was added (Act 2:41-42) and joined (Act 5:13) unto the body of believers and became of "one heart and of one soul" (Act 4:32) with them, "being of one accord, of one mind" (Phil 2:2). When a man is ordained and becomes a pastor, he still remains joined unto the body of Christ and of one accord and one mind with the brethren in doctrine, faith, purpose, charity, etc., but in another way, he becomes disjoined and withdrawn from them. This happens when a man is called to the ministry and set apart from the brethren as were Paul and Barnabas when the Holy Ghost said, "Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them" (Act 13:2). Whereas his entrance into the church was an experience of uniting and connection, his entrance into the ministry is in many ways an experience of disuniting, disconnection, and division from the brethren. Instead of sitting next to the brethren and being overseen by the pastor, he now stands in front of them and oversees them (1Pe 5:2; Act 20:28). Instead of being taught with the rest, he now teaches them. Instead of following the faith of the pastor (Heb 13:7) along with the brethren, he now becomes the example that the believers are supposed to follow (1Ti 4:12; 1Pe 5:3; Tit 2:7). He has increased sorrow and grief (Ecc 1:18); more is required of him (Luk 12:48); he will therefore receive the greater condemnation (Jam 3:1); and it takes but a little folly to destroy him (Ecc 10:1; 1Ti 3:2). He is that watchman on the wall who must always be vigilant (1Ti 3:2). He is ever watching (Heb 13:17), which renders church and church get-togethers to be never quite the same as they were before. There is a subtle, but very real, separation between a pastor and his church. He longs to once again be just one of the guys, but he knows to do so would be his demise. Only a pastor can fully appreciate these things, but my hope is that this has given you a little window to peer into the life of a man of God.