The Scriptures give us the job of a pastor very clearly. I’ll deal with some of the language used at a later point and talk about how those words are connected to the assumed role of the pastor that Paul makes when he addresses young Timothy and Titus as well as the assumed role Peter makes when he addresses elders in his letter.What is that assumed role? They assume we are following Jesus and know that role and mission well.
Remember, pastors are leading a culture of people inside a culture of people to a very clear and specific mission. If a pastor loses sight of the mission while managing the culture of people inside a culture of people he finds himself in danger of missing the point of leading Jesus’ people. If we are to be leading people, what make us different than a civic organization?
The church can’t simply be for the maintenance of morality because, frankly, there are some people outside of the church who are more moral than some pastors I know. They just have never tasted the transformation of the Gospel. General revelation has brought about a moral code that is fine just not enough to save. So, surely there is more to shepherding Jesus’ people than the maintenance of good behavior.
What are we to guard? What is our teaching supposed to point toward? What is the larger and grand mission we are to lead people toward? Here is a hint: it might get us killed. It is not safe at all. It is costly both in terms of finances and blood. It requires a different goal in church budgeting. It defies passing the buck to other groups. It requires personal engagement. Please post some comments on what Paul and Peter are assuming we know from following Jesus.