1. The Pastor Is a Shepherd

The root meaning of “pastor” is “shepherd.” The Lord Jesus is our good and perfect Shepherd, as we have probably heard often:

1The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2He makes me to lie do

wn in green pastures;
He leads me beside the still waters.
3He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
5You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
You anoint my head with oil;
My cup runs over.
6Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days of my life;
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord
Forever. (Psalm 23 (NKJV))

So, what is it that pastors, as spiritual under-shepherds, are supposed to do for us? Our pastors shepherd us with the words of the Good Shepherd.

  • Provide spiritual nourishment (vv. 1-2) Our pastors should feed us with a regular diet of God’s word to strengthen us and build up our faith.
  • Refresh us spiritually (v. 3) Our pastors restore our soul to innocence and hope when we are guilty or depressed, through the promises of our Savior. With God’s word, pastor’s heal our souls from our spiritual injuries.
  • Lead us to a righteousness that honors Christ. (v. 3) The righteousness of Christ is given to us through Jesus words, “I forgive you.” His righteousness is given from God through His word and received by faith.
  • Give us comfort in the face of death. (v. 4) Jesus is the death of death, and our pastors comfort us with the promises of the Risen One.
  • Protect from our spiritual enemies. (v. 5) Listen to your pastor’s warnings and guidance so that you can go through life without spiritual injury.
  • Give the hope of eternal life. (v. 6) Faithful pastors give the mercy of God to their flocks all during this life, and point to the eternal mercies of our Savior that open heaven for us.