How do you know if your pastor loves you? Some will say it’s because he tells them he does. Others will say it’s because he visits the hospitals and shut in members. And both are a valid part of the answer. Then there are those who aren’t sure because they’ve never thought much about it. The purpose of this post is to suggest there is a way to know if your pastor loves you…
How we answer that question will reveal not only what and how we think, but also what we expect of our pastor. Then it will reveal our Biblical understanding about how to evaluate our pastor’s ministry from a Biblical viewpoint. Examining this matter will be helpful for us all.
As always, we look to Scripture for guidance. We seek God’s view, then form our opinion based on what He placed in His Word. Without doing that, we are answering the question subjectively… which usually means our answer is incorrect to a degree. Below are the ways you can know if your pastor loves you as he should.
Acts 6:2-4. The pastor who loves the flock will understand clearly his call from God. He will make sure that a lot of his time and energy is devoted to what is of the greatest importance for God’s people. According to this passage, that means that the pastor who loves his people will devote massive amounts of his time to praying for them. He will also work hard so that when God’s people come to be fed, they are given spiritual food to strengthen their walk and relationship with the Savior.
2 Timothy 4:2a (Click here for context). The pastor who loves the church will preach The Word! The single devotion of his life will be to open God’s Word… discern it’s meaning from God… then deliver that (And only that) from the pulpit. He knows that one day he will stand before God and give an account for his faithfulness in this area, so he is preparing for eternity (“As those who will give account”) by preaching God’s Word faithfully now.
Acts 20:27, 1 Corinthians 2:24. The pastor who loves the flock will make sure that the messages delivered to them are Gospel centered. He will make sure that he doesn’t stick to favorite passages or doctrines but will preach whatever the Word contains. He will refrain from sermonettes and lite doctrine that doesn’t stretch and grow God’s people. In short, he will seek to facilitate maturity among the congregation by teaching whatever God’s Word contains.
2 Timothy 2:24-26. The pastor who loves God’s people will show by his life that he believes what he teaches. The reason is that he is an example to the flock of proper, right, and Christian conduct (1 Peter 5:2-3). This means he shows love when… He is kind, teaches effectively, endures hardship, and corrects with gentleness those who are in opposition to him.
Matthew 28:19-20. The pastor who loves the church will disciple them in the faith. He will also build relationships with the lost… encourage those who are struggling… visit those who are bereaved and sick. And it will all be done for the purpose of leading them to a closer walk with God… making them disciples (followers) of Christ.
The pastor who loves God’s people will keep in priority what is important. He will not be swayed to do things just to enhance job security… he will not play favorites with opinion leaders in the church… he will not be pressured to do anything that is not 100% for the glory of God, for the good of the Church, and consistent with God’s call on his life. He will always seek to encourage others to fulfill God’s call for their life.
Does your pastor love you?