From expository preacher and teacher Steven Lawson, a very convicting exhortation to pastors (and all Christians) from 1 Timothy 4:7-10. At a time when so many ungodly people claim to be pastors but clearly are not, it is helpful to review what the Bible says about the office of Pastor and its responsibilities. The wisdom of godly pastors is invaluable to Christians, and Dr Lawson is one such person who consistently offers sound teaching and exhortation.
I commend to you this and other teaching from Dr Lawson, and have included links to this message and other talks below the introduction.
Dr. Steven J. Lawson is President and founder of OnePassion Ministries, a ministry designed to equip biblical expositors to bring about a new reformation in the church. He is also a Teaching Fellow for Ligonier Ministries and Professor of Preaching and oversees the Doctor of Ministry program at The Master’s Seminary. Dr. Lawson is also Professor in Residence for Truth Remains. Further, Dr. Lawson serves as the Executive Editor for Expositor Magazine. Dr. Lawson has served as a pastor for thirty-four years and is the author of over twenty books. He and his wife Anne have four children. ~Sermon Audio website
The Costly Discipline of a Godly Pastor
The young, zealous pastor of Dundee, Scotland, Robert Murray M’Cheyne, who flamed out for God at age 29 and gave himself to the work of God as perhaps no young pastor has so uniquely given himself to God’s work, said before he died, “The greatest need of my people is my personal holiness.” M’Cheyne understood that the effectiveness of his pastoral ministry, including his pulpit ministry, depended in large measure upon his personal godliness. M’Cheyne saw himself as a chosen instrument in the hand of a sovereign God, a minister who must be a pure instrument.
M’Cheyne said to other pastors in his day, “How diligently the Calgary officer keeps his saber clean and sharp. Every stain he rubs off with the greatest care. Remember, you are God’s sword, His instrument. In great measure, according to the purity and perfection of the instrument will be its success.” He then added, “It is not great talents God blesses so much as great likeness to Jesus. A holy minister is an awful weapon in the hand of God.” M’Cheyne rightly saw that the power of his ministry depended upon the purity of his life. M’Cheyne prayed, “Lord, make me as holy as a pardoned sinner can be.”
M’Cheyne asserted, “Your whole usefulness depends on this.” This must be our prayer and this must be our passion. Down through the centuries, those who have been the greatest preachers have understood that the power of their ministry has been largely measured by the purity of their lives.
Read the rest of the article here (from a talk on 1 Timothy 4: 7-10 given at the 2014 Shepherd’s Conference).