Devotional Thought for Today – 02/08/2021

1 Peter 5

In this the closing Chapter of Peter’s first Epistle to the churches scattered about Asia minor, he reminds them or maybe better put leaves them with some final instructions as the eldest of “elders.” 

v.1-4 Is an exhortation to the elders to feed the flock and lead as Jesus had taught him (Peter) to Shepherd them.

v.5-9 Are encouragement to the younger men of the church to be submissive to their elders,  sober and vigilant against the temptations of the devil. 

It is here we find our text for today v.6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: (KJV)  There are three (3)  things here  I want to point out:

      •  We Must – Humble ourselves: this means bowing down before the authority of God, putting Him first always.  It does not mean being weak or having a sense of self-hatred (think the woke movement). Jesus was the epitome of humility and never could be accused of being weak. As C.S. Lewis said, “Humility is not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less.”
      • God WillExalt You: God glorifies the obedient. There are “mansions” in heaven for all true believers, Christ Jesus has promised so. Yet We also know that each believer will receive different “crowns” based upon your faithfulness to God.  I once explained it this way (sarcastically) to a fellow Christian who although professing believer did nothing for the kingdom. Some will have a mansion on the corner of State and Main others so far our on Rural Route 3 that they will need a set of Binoculars to clearly see the glory of God. 
      • His Time – in due time:  God’s timing is everything.  He alone has sovereign control over all the universe. We can accept this or deny the God of the Bible, His Word really leaves us no other option.  

Today’s Prayer 

From Matthew Henry’s Method of Prayer

Lord, give me the grace to deny myself, to take up my cross daily, and to follow Christ, Matthew 16:24(KJV) to keep under the body and bring it into subjection. 1 Corinthians 9:27(KJV)

For thy dominion is an everlasting dominion, and thy kingdom is from generation to generation: Thou dost according to thy will in the armies of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth, and none can stay thy hand, or say unto thee, What doest thou? Daniel 4:34-35(KJV) or Why doest thou so?


Daily Devotional – Pray for Ministers

I am working the next couple of days so y’all get the short form again. I thought I would share from my reading of Matthew Henry’s Devotional on prayer. While this devotional is directed specifically at those in the Pulpit it is applicable to all who minister the true uncompromising Holy Word of God and as such we should pray for them too. – Mike

Pray The Bible: Promoting, Encouraging, and Assisting God's People in Biblical Prayer

Pray for the Ministers of God’s Holy Word and Sacraments

Teach your ministers how they ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, 1 Timothy 3:15(ESV) that they may not preach themselves but Jesus Christ as Lord, 2 Corinthians 4:5(ESV) and may do their best to present themselves approved to God, workmen who have no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15(ESV)

Make them competent in the Scriptures, Acts 18:24(ESV) that from them they may be equipped for every good work, 2 Timothy 3:17(ESV) in teaching showing integrity, dignity, and sound speech that cannot be condemned. Titus 2:7-8(ESV)

Enable them to give attendance to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching; to practice these things; 1 Timothy 4:13-15(ESV) to devote themselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word; Acts 6:4(ESV) to immerse themselves in them and to persist in them, that they may save both themselves and their hearers. 1 Timothy 4:15-16(ESV)

Let words be given to them in opening their mouths boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, that they may speak as they ought to speak, Ephesians 6:19-20(ESV) as competent ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; 2 Corinthians 3:6(ESV) and let them by the Lord’s mercy be trustworthy. 1 Corinthians 7:25(ESV)

Let the arms of their hands be made agile by the hands of the Mighty One of Jacob; Genesis 49:24(ESV) and let them be full of power by the Spirit of the Lord of hosts, Micah 3:8(ESV) to show your people their transgressions and the house of Jacob their sins. Isaiah 58:1(ESV)

Make them sound in the faith, Titus 1:13(ESV) and enable them always to teach what accords with sound doctrine, Titus 2:1(ESV) correcting their opponents with gentleness; and let not the Lord’s servants be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach. 2 Timothy 2:24-25(ESV)

Make them good examples to the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith, and in purity; 1 Timothy 4:12(ESV) and let them purify themselves who bear the vessels of the Lord, Isaiah 52:11(ESV) and let HOLY TO THE LORD be written upon their foreheads. Exodus 28:36(ESV)

Lord, grant that they may not labor in vain or spend their strength for nothing and vanity, Isaiah 49:4(ESV) but let the hand of the Lord be with them, that many may believe and turn to the Lord. Acts 11:21(ESV)


Pastor, Pay Careful Attention

Pastor, Pay Careful Attention


Using Acts 20:28 as his text David finds 5 “takeaways” for pastors to contemplate. 

    1. First, pastors need to pay careful attention to their own spiritual lives
    2. Second…the pastor is also called to pay careful attention to the souls of his flock.
    3. Third, God himself ordained that you would be at the church you now currently serve. 
    4. Fourth, pastors are to care for the church of God.
    5. Fifth, Jesus obtained the church with his own blood. 

How Much Authority Does a Pastor Have?

The Master's Seminary Blog

How Much Authority Does a Pastor Have?

By Austin T. Duncan, Feb 14, 2020

If Jesus, the sinless and perfect son of God, limited Himself to speaking nothing during his incarnation except the truth He received from His father, how much more should those who have been called into His ministry speak only on the authority of divine Scripture?

– John MacArthur

Heavy-handed, cult-like leaders abound in churches today. These types of leaders are in all sorts of churches—both small and large. Micromanagers of the flock and power-tripping elder boards are not confined to corporate mega-churches. Pastoral authority has been abused and has overreached its God-given boundaries. But this top-down leadership, CEO mentality, bullying, and intimidating are not Jesus’ style of leadership. I believe much of the problem is rooted in a misunderstanding of the nature and limits of pastoral authority.

Pastors and elders need a functional understanding of spiritual authority. A lack of clarity will make both leading and following in the church more difficult. Authority is a precious gift from God intended for our stability and direction.

God’s authority is ultimate.
The pastor’s authority is delegated and limited by the Word of God

The pastor who understands his authority is a blessing to the church because he operates within the boundaries of God’s written word, he increases his people’s confidence in the Scripture, and he honors the conscience and competence of spirit-filled people.

So, what are the nature and limits of pastoral authority? There’s not a single verse that explains everything, but by compilation and consolidation of the Bible’s teaching on authority, we can derive several principles that will help us define pastoral authority as the following:


Humble Yourself

Image result for humble ourselves

Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” (1 Peter 5:5 ESV)
Igualmente, jóvenes, estad sujetos a los ancianos; y todos, sumisos unos a otros, revestíos de humildad; porque: Dios resiste a los soberbios, Y da gracia a los humildes. (RVR 1960)

In verses 1-4  Peter has been exhorting the elders to carefully and dutifully shepherd the flock. When we get to our text he shifts gears and reminds the flock of our duty to humbly submit to the elders God has appointed over us. 

If this sounds familiar it should as it is very close to what we find in Hebrews 13:17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.

I would note that this does not mean that you go off and blindly follow anyone who declares themselves an bishop, elder, minister, pastor, etc. The MEN you are to submit to must meet the qualification for a Shepherd  1 Timothy 3:1–7 Titus 1:6–9. It is God’s Holy Word alone that tells us these qualifications not something man has corrupted. 

If then God has led you to a local church (if you are not in one you need to be) that has a qualified elder, one who is committed to expository preaching and reaching out to the lost (Great Commission) then we are commanded by Hebrews 13:17 and 1 Peter 5:5 to cloth ourselves in humility and submit to the authority God has given them today. 

What Are the Requirements to Be an Elder?
How Do I Obey and Submit to My Leaders?


Lessons from 50 Years of Pastoral Ministry

Not long after I began as a Volunteer Chaplain at Hancock County Jail and preaching regularly a few times a week I had the pleasure of hearing Geoff speak at a conference on “Christ the Mediator”. To say that I was impressed with his energy and commitment to the Word would be and understatement. Later he took the time to spend a few minutes encouraging me in my work for the Kingdom.



On Being Pastored

The following article assumes that you are in a solid bible believing and teaching church. One built upon the covenants of Grace as set forth in God’s Holy Word. If you are not in such a church check out the Founder Ministry Church Search at the Bottom of the link below. – Mike

| May 23, 2017

Continued at Source: On Being Pastored

Pray for Your Church Leaders

If we are not doing this we are failing in our duties as chosen children of God.

The warning in the book of James to teachers is sobering, “Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness” (3:1)…

Continued at Source: Pray for Your Church Leaders