Wednesday, February 15, 2017

shepherding from the gospel

how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you in public and from house to house, testifying both to Jews and to Greeks of repentance toward God and of faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.
Acts 20:20-21

Paul is doing a personal reminder to the Ephesian elders of his commitment to always be preaching the gospel. It was a pattern that marked his ministry to Ephesus from his arrival there. It still set the agenda for him. Paul was all about that wonderful gospel!

As we read his charge to the Ephesian elders to shepherd the flock, to guard it from false teaching, and to keep it from attack, we must remember the gospel is the motive and the standard for shepherding. Without the gospel there is no flock over which Jesus is the Chief Shepherd. Without the gospel there is no way to know what is true from what is false. Without repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ there is no way to correct our doctrine or practices. The gospel is the center of what pastors are all about.

So I am reminded to keep the gospel at the center. It is where I live. It is what I teach first and foremost. It is what I must model with my life to the flock. It means I repent when I sin against God or against people. It means I turn in faith to trust the Lord Jesus Christ. It means I willingly share that to the precious people God has placed with me and for whom I will give an account to Christ.

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