Text: Acts 20 (Judges 5-6)
As the Apostle Paul makes his way toward Jerusalem from Greece to end his third missionary journey, he makes a port call near Ephesus. He sends for the elders of the Ephesian church and meets with them. He gives them some instructions, to include these words:
“Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.” (Acts 20:28)
The elders of that church, and all elders today in various local churches, have been put in place by the Holy Spirit. They are to “oversee” – that is to guide and guard, organize and lead, teach and discipline the people. We see here that they are to pay careful attention. To lead God’s people is a serious responsibility, requiring diligence and focus. And they are to pay attention to all the flock – every individual matters. They are to care for the church – their work is to be clothed in kindness, compassion, gentleness, humility, patience, forgiveness and especially love. There is also the reminder here that the people of God, the Church, belongs to Jesus who bought them with His own blood. The Church is His and belongs to no human authority or group. With this in view, please pray for all the leaders in your church. Respond well to their leadership – following and encouraging. It is a great responsibility they bear – with great fruit to come.
in Him, Mike