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  • Writer's pictureDoc Murphy

Pastors are Managers

Pastors are not church planters or those who are called by God to be apostles. As we saw in the last chapter, pastors are managers. They manage the congregation. They don’t start or establish the congregation, they care for, protect, feed, and manage the congregation.

You have owners of businesses and then they hire managers to run the business. The manager hires employees, trains them, pays them, counsels them, coaches them, and fires them. The owner leads the managers, and the managers lead the employees.

Managers are leaders but they are not owners. Managers and Owners are both leaders but two totally different dynamics, personalities, and roles.

God set it up the same way in the Body of Christ. Apostles establish congregations, set things in order, and pastors manage the congregations. Apostles will identify, train, ordain, and place pastors in their pastoral position in local congregations. The Holy Spirit makes shepherds (pastors) overseers, but He uses apostles (and sometimes groups of elders. Read 1 Timothy 4:14) to lay hands on them and position them in the congregation.

Let's look at a few scriptures that support this:

1 Timothy 3:5 An overseer (pastor, shepherd, elder, or bishop) must manage his own household well and keep his children under control, with complete dignity. 5 For if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how can he care for (manage) the church of God?

Titus 1:7 Since a pastor (overseer, elder, or shepherd) manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain.

Pastors are managers, not establishers. You will not find in the New Testament where a pastor (or any other ministry gift besides apostles) started a church. You will see where apostles started churches and then had to pastor those churches until they were able to place pastors over the congregations. Peter did it, Paul did it, and other apostles did it. This is how it works. Read Part One of this series of books called “The Office of the Serial Entrepreneur” where I explain the office of an apostle.

...Let’s continue.

1 Peter 5:2

  • [Aramaic Bible in Plain English] Shepherd the flock of God that follows you and give care spiritually, not by compulsion, but with pleasure, not by defiled profit, but with all your heart,

  • [Contemporary English Version] Just as shepherds watch over their sheep, you must watch over everyone God has placed in your care. Do it willingly in order to please God, and not simply because you think you must. Let it be something you want to do, instead of something you do merely to make money.

  • [Douay-Rheims Bible] Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking care of it, not by constraint, but willingly, according to God: not for filthy lucre's sake, but voluntarily:

“Shepherd the flock” is a verb. This is a statement of management. He is saying, “Do everything you are supposed to do as a leader or manager of that congregation. Feed them, take care of them, and protect them. Do what Shepherds do.”

John 21:16 Jesus asked a second time, "Simon son of John, do you love Me?" "Yes, Lord," he answered, "You know I love You." Jesus told him, "Shepherd My sheep."

Acts 20:28 Keep watch over yourselves and the entire flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which He purchased with His own blood.

2 Timothy 1:6 (NLT) This is why I remind you to fan into flames the spiritual gift God gave you when I laid my hands on you.

It must be noted that the Apostle Paul and the Apostle Peter were both training pastors in Acts 20 and 1 Peter 5. You will never read where another pastor, teacher, evangelist, or prophet trained, mentored, or coached a pastor. I’m not saying an experienced pastor can’t mentor another pastor, but what I’m saying is the basic leadership structure is out of order these days. When you see Titus appointing elders in every city he was acting as the regional apostle for the apostle Paul under Paul’s direction.

Titus 1:4 To Titus, my true son in our common faith: Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior. 5 The reason I left you in Crete was that you might put in order what was left unfinished and appoint elders in every town, as I directed you.

Titus 1:5 (AMPC) For this reason I left you [behind] in Crete, that you might set right what was defective and finish what was left undone, and that you might appoint elders and set them over the churches (assemblies) in every city as I directed you.

As we can see, elders or pastors are appointed and set in a pastoral position in a local congregation by another apostle. Pastors manage what was started by apostles.

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