The Shepherd – part 1 – Jan 3

Saturday January 3, 2015

Texts: John 10:10, 11; Matthew 4:23, 24; Matthew 9:35, 36. Satan is a thief, who steals things of value that belong to you. The devil not only kills, but he destroys. He is evil! Do not blame God for what he does. Being robbed is like being violated, and that is what Satan does. Jesus came to give us life, more abundant life, like a water spring that you cannot shut off. Jesus is the good shepherd. A shepherd has to kill bears, lions, and wolves. He gives his life for his sheep (verses 11, 15, 17, and 18). Ministry is work, but it is really poured-out love. To shepherd means to feed. Jesus restored Peter by telling him to feed His lambs and His sheep, which is the role of a pastor, even though Peter was an apostle. Matthew 4:23, 24 tell us that Jesus’ work here was teaching, preaching, and healing. Teaching affects a man’s will through his intellect, whereas preaching affects a man’s will through his emotions. Healing is part of being a pastor. Matthew 9:35, 36 also say that Jesus taught, preached, and healed the sick. The Word must be a priority in your life. One of the reasons we cannot see the big picture, in other words, the multitudes, is because we do not have enough compassion. Compassion is the answer. Jesus saw that the multitudes were like sheep scattered without a shepherd. The problem is that there are too few laborers. Jesus laid His hands on everyone and healed them (Luke 4:40-44). Apostle Dale told of laying hands on many more than eight hundred people in Armenia because the Lord told him to do so. God wants to do miracles through our hands. The general work of the Gospel is teaching, preaching, and healing. Secondly, the needs of the people call for a greater depth of love. Thirdly, we are to have respect for individual, God-given assignments. Faith works by love. God never said you need a church, but you do need a shepherd (Number 27:16-20). The pastoral ministry puts us in a position to have life and that more abundantly. When Jesus was raised from the dead, what was on His mind was what Peter was to do. It is not about you anymore after you make Jesus the Lord of your life. Offering message: 3 John 2 tells us that our soul must prosper for us to be in health. Seek God’s kingdom first (Matthew 6:33). Allow the Lord to prosper you. Hear, believe, and receive what God says. You must be born-again, be filled with the Holy Spirit, and be baptized. We have a choice. We are to choose life and follow and speak His Word (Joshua 1:8).