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What the Bible says about Overseer, Function of
(From Forerunner Commentary)

John 21:15-17

The King James' translators blur a distinction Jesus makes by translating two different words into the single word "feed." The New King James corrects this deficiency in verse 16 by using "tend," the exact same word translated as "shepherd" in I Peter 5:2. It has a far broader application than the word rendered "feed" in verses 15 and 17. Taken together, these words reveal that a pastor has broad responsibility for the overall health and protection of the flock. Applying this principle back to physical health, good health and well-being require a multifaceted program beyond just eating good food. For instance, we must also get regular and sufficient sleep, avoid bodily injury, and maintain good attitudes.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Eating: How Good It Is! (Part Three)

John 21:15-17

It is Peter who is focused upon. There were seven outstanding men on that shore, and Jesus thrust the responsibility of the care of the church on Peter—not John, not James, not Thomas, but Peter, the first among equals. Peter refers to this in I Peter 5. He had this God-given responsibility to care for the sheep.

John W. Ritenbaugh
Unity (Part 2): God's Pattern of Leadership

Acts 20:28

Paul tells the elders to be careful how they shepherd the flock. He emphasizes that it is a God-given duty and responsibility. He says, "The Holy Spirit has made you overseers." Elders, ministers, are especially called out to watch over the flock, to guard it, to help it, to lead it. This is no light matter: The ones they are to help are the precious redeemed of God. Jesus Christ has given His life's blood for these people, and they are precious in God's sight. So the ministry is to be very careful how they watch over the people.

Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Jude

1 Timothy 3:1

It is not wrong to want to be an elder, or an overseer, or a pastor. If one's motives are right, it is not an improper ambition. Being a pastor of a church and helping the people are good works, if they are pursued in a godly way.

Richard T. Ritenbaugh
Countering Presumptuousness

1 Peter 5:1-5

Notice all the words that suggest leading and/or following: elder(s), shepherd, flock, serving, overseers, lords, entrusted, and examples. This clearly establishes that God's church is a body in which He has placed leaders to oversee and care for His people. Further, the leadership is to provide examples for them to follow.

The Bible nowhere anticipates independent Christians in its instructions, but it always assumes the body has ministers given by Christ to provide teaching and guidance. Too frequently, people separate from one group then regroup around a person whom Christ has not appointed to teach His Word. It is not that this person cannot teach at all but that Christ has not given him the gifts to teach His people in His behalf. He was not placed in the body for that purpose. Steady spiritual degeneration within that group occurs.

John W. Ritenbaugh
'I'll Never Follow Another Man!'


 




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