Monday, April 23, 2007

Beeke on True Shepherding


My posts have been infrequent this last week and will probably be so this week as well with the conference coming this weekend. I have a backlog of book reviews which I will hope to get rolling next week.

In the meantime, let me recommend Joel Beeke’s excellent brief article in the most recent Tabletalk. Justin Taylor recently noted that this month’s Tabletalk articles were available online, and I was caught by Beeke’s title, “True Shepherding.” Beeke speaks powerfully on the role of the pastor in shepherding the flock- a topic often discussed here.

Here are a few quotes:

“don’t regard grieving people as an interruption…
Grieving, hurting people are what ministry is all about. We must not think of our churches and our parishioners in terms of numbers or cases; rather, we should think of our churches as hospitals where the wounded and grieving come to us, seeking our biblical guidance and loving care”

“If we do not shepherd them in their sorrows, we are hirelings, not shepherds, and should repent of our indifference.”
This is a great two page piece. I encourage you to read (and print to keep for the future!) the whole thing.

3 comments:

Phil said...

Hi Ray, I'm working on a thesis right now on the shepherd metaphor for biblical leadership. Could you direct me to any good sources for determining the patristic through Reformation views on the metaphor?

Jeff Lash said...

Well, well, well...look who gets a reference shout out on your blog? None other than Dr. Joel Beeke. It seems like I have heard of that name before. ;) Great quote...a great truth for pastors.

Ray Van Neste said...

Phil,
Yours is a good question Tim Laniak has a new book on the biblical material surrounding this metaphr. I have briefly looked over the book but I don't know if he deals with history of interpretation. You might look there.
In general no one from the Patristics to the Reformation doubted that the shepherd metaphor held for their own day and that it stressed oversight and care. The challenge to this has arisen in our own CEO day.