Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Shepherding the Flock of God

Over the past few days I haven't read nearly as much as I'd like due to being sick again. However, I am really enjoying The Christian Ministry by Charles Bridges. I have found it both extremely encouraging at times, and extremely convicting at times. The following quote I found helpful. In the context, he helps to see the importance of the ministry of the word of God. For instance, he began a paragraph by writing, "The ministry of the word was ordained for the planting and watering of the church." After describing in more detail what he means by this statement (and giving Scriptural support), he writes:
If the church be called the flock, the Minister is the pastor to "seek that which is lost--to strengthen the diseased--to heal the sick--to bring again that which was driven away;" in a word, to shepherd the flock in all the exercises of tenderness, consideration, and care, that belong to this endearing character. If the family of Christ be an household, the Minister is "the faithful and wise steward," who dispenses the provision of the house according to the necessities of its several members. If the Church of God be a city, he is the watchman to wake and warn the slumberers of their peril. If it be a husbandry, he is the "labourer," to plant and water the soil--to cleanse the earth--to watch the growth of the plant--and instrumentally to bring forward the harvest. If it be a building, he is the "Master-builder," to build upon the "sure foundation" lively stones--a spiritual house--"growing into a holy temple of the Lord, builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit." If there be a treaty of peace to be negotiated between the Majesty of heaven and a world of rebels, he is the ambassador, entrusted with "the Ministry of reconciliation;" and praying them in Christ's stead--"Be ye reconciled unto God."
Again, I found this both encouraging and convicting!

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