Previously, I put a question out there on my Practical Shepherding blog asking, What are the top 10 biblical priorities for every pastor and asked for your suggestions and input. Now that the Call Conference has come and gone (which went very well), it is time to reveal my top 10.
Keep in mind, these are the priorities of every pastor that focus on the care for souls under our charge in our local church. This means being an evangelist, taking heed to ourselves, and shepherding the souls of our wife and children are not on the list, but are clearly commanded to be a priority in the pastor’s life.
The umbrella under which these top 10 priorities all fit comes from the direct command to God’s shepherds to “Shepherd the flock of God among you (1 Peter 4:2).” The shepherds are to watch over the flock as one who will give an account (Heb. 13:17) until the Chief Shepherd appears (1 Peter 5:4). The priorities are:
1) Guard the Truth: 1 Tim 4:6-7, 16; 6:20-21; 2 Tim. 1:13-14; 2:1-2
2) Preach and Teach the Word: 1 Tim. 4:13; 2 Tim. 4:2; Acts 6:2
3) Pray for the Flock: Eph. 6:18-20; 1 Thess. 5:17; Acts 6:2
4) Set an Example: 1 Tim. 4:12; 1 Pt. 5:3 cf. 1 Cor. 11:1
5) Visit the Sick: James 5:14; Matt. 25:31-40
6) Comfort the Grieving: 1 Thess. 4:13-17; John 11
7) Care for Widows: 1 Tim. 5:3; Acts 6:1-7
8) Confront Sin: 1 Cor. 5; Matt. 18; 1 Thess. 3; Titus 3
9) Encourage the Faint-hearted: 1 Thess. 5:14; Rom. 14:1
10) Identify and Train Other Leaders: Acts 6:1-7; 13:1-3; 2 Tim. 2:2
The top 3 are there because without the truth being guarded and preached, we have nothing. I assume no one would dispute prayer for the flock filling in the top 3. Another observation to make is that the last 3 are the ones hardest to prioritize because they are the tasks that have little immediate fruit or reward.
My talk at the conference on these 10 priorities is now available by video here.
Join the Conversation
What are your thoughts on these top ten priorities? What would your list look like?
Note: This article was first posted at Brian Croft’s Practical Shepherding site and is re-posted with permission. You can read the original post at The Top Ten Biblical Priorities for Every Pastor Revealed. You can also read a follow-up post: What Does It Mean for a Pastor to Guard the Truth?