The Pastor and the Congregation
August 11, 2019
- The apostle Paul in verse 2 exhorts the Ephesians to “be eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace”
- Another translation says “make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit.”
- It is the Spirit of God that creates unity among Christians – it is not built by us! It comes from Him! And it’s wonderful.
- Paul informs us that we have a critical role, a key responsibility, an important part to play in maintaining it — “make every effort to keep the unity….”
- One of the ways we work to preserve our unity is by being clear on what the Lord calls us to be about in the church
- What is the work that pastors are to be doing?
- What is the role of the congregation?
- How do we work together to preserve the unity of the Spirit?
- We want to make every effort to walk faithfully, together in the church.
I. What is the Role of the Pastor?
- “To equip the saints for the work of ministry (v.12)”
- Pastors are appointed by God to equip the saints for the work of ministry.
- What does that equipping include?
A. Teach the Word
“I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the Word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching (2 Timothy 4:1-2).”
- The teaching of the Word, therefore, is the central facet of the job description for the pastor.
- See Acts 6:1-6.
B. Shepherd the Flock
C. Facilitate Ministry
- To equip for ministry means in part to help facilitate ministry.
II. What is the Role of the Congregation?
- If one of the primary roles of the pastor is to teach the Word of God, one of the primary roles of the congregation is to receive that Word.
- The role of the congregation is also to use their spiritual gifts to serve the body – “when each part is working properly (vs.16)”
III. What Will Result When Pastors and Congregations Do This?
- Mutual Encouragement
- Unity is Preserved
- Ongoing Growth and Maturity
- The Glory of God!
- We will be cooperating with God’s plan to build the church.
Questions For Discussion/Application:
- Re-read the text, Ephesians 4:11-16. What initial observations and insights do you have from reading this text?
- What does it look like to be someone who receives the Word of God—who is not only a hearer, but a doer of the Word (James 1:22)?
- What are some of the good fruits that result when pastors and congregations alike fulfill their God-give roles?