Monday, December 10, 2012

The Anti-Pastor

[From Dec. 3, 2012]

"For I am now raising up in the land a shepherd who does not care for the perishing, or seek the wandering, or heal the maimed, or nourish the healthy, but devours the flesh of the fat ones, tearing off even their hooves."
(Zechariah 11:16)

In pop-culture, the Anti-Christ gets a lot of publicity.  Entire movies are made about him.  Terrifying stories are told.  He's the subject of many defaming statements, etc.  But in reality, he's still yet to grace this earth with his presence (thank God!).

As I was reading Zechariah today, however, I was introduced to another destructive force who IS present and has caused irreparable damage: the Anti-Pastor!  What? Never heard of him either?  Listen to how s/he inflicts harm upon God's people:
  • Doesn't care for the perishing... ie. those outside of the faith who haven't come to know God's amazing grace.
  • Doesn't seek the wandering... ie. those within the faith who have crises of belief (note: the Hebrew word here can also be translated "youth").
  • Doesn't heal the maimed... ie. those who've been hurt and damaged in this life (emotionally, relationally, etc.).
  • Doesn't nourish the healthy... ie. those who remain faithful and true, and still need spiritual undergirding.
  • But devours the flesh of the fat ones... ie. USES those within the faith (for their money, emotionally, etc.), rather than serving/empowering them.
For those of us in the "shepherding business," like myself, this should be a sobering message.  We've been given a crucial role by God - we dare not neglect or abuse our office as pastors.

Help us remain faithful & true, Lord.

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