“pastor mike, pastor mike…” – seven

this past week while i was in colorado, i had the privilege of addressing a whole group of youth pastors on what stood out to me in the first seven chapters of the gospel of john.  even though it was a large chunk of scripture, there was one section that didn’t just stand out to me…it screamed!

in thinking about john the baptist, check out these excerpts:

There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John.  He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe.  He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.  1:6-8

Now this was John’s testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was.  He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Christ. ” They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?”  He said, “I am not.”  “Are you the Prophet?”  He answered, “No… in the words of Isaiah the prophet, ‘I am the voice of one calling in the desert, `Make straight the way for the Lord.’ ”  1:19-23

Now some Pharisees who had been sent  questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” “I baptize with water,” John replied, “but among you stands one you do not know.  He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.”  1:24-27

To this John replied…He must become greater; I must become less.  3:30

john the baptist is the model for anyone who seeks to be a servant in kingdom.  it is never about us.  it is never about our reputation.  it is never about about the one speaks on behalf of jesus.  it is about jesus.

it’s his church.  it’s his rep.  it’s his agenda.

the pedestal that pastors perch on perilous.  some pastors believe they belong there.  some believe they have earned it.  some believe god has put them there.  some conclude that they are the holy men of god.  some believe they are to lead from the pedestal.  some feel that they can only be effective overseers if they are up in front.

other pastors are placed on the pedestal…by people who have an unbiblical and unhealthy expectation for what a pastor is supposed to be and do.  pastors are not to be honored any more than any other servant in the church. pastors are not to be revered…only god himself is to be held in “awe”. pastors are not to be lifted up…jesus said, “if i am lifted up, i will draw all people to me.”

my counsel to this assembly of youth pastors was to crawl of the pedestal…quickly…intentionally…before they fall off or someone shoots them!

pastors are good people who are called to serve…called to be a voice in the wilderness.  pastors are not worthy to tie the laces of the sandals of jesus.  pastors are leaders.  pastors are to lead the way in becoming less, so that jesus can become greater.
that’s it.
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2 thoughts on ““pastor mike, pastor mike…” – seven

  1. Most of the things we do in life we do “for our own good” but living and being isn’t about our own good; but for the good of God and the selfless spirit of Love he desires to generate in all of us.

  2. This reminds me of when Jesus says that we are to use our authority to serve. I was struck by this particularly one time when I read through the book of Matthew at one sitting. Throughout the book, Matthew records Jesus’ authority over sickness, nature, and demons, and many people ascribe authority to Jesus (ie. “he speaks with authority”). But then at the end of the book, Jesus says that we aren’t supposed to be like the heathens, who use their authority to lord it over others. Whoever wants to be great must be a servant.

    If a pastor wants to be first, he must become a slave.

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