Feed the Sheep

Ezekiel 34 is about shepherds (preachers) and is very valid today.

Many of today’s preachers are hirelings. They are paid professionals who’s job it is to get up and speak for a time Sunday, teach a class on Wednesday and visit a few of the elderly members. They are usually trained to start and grow a business, in this case a church. Their religious training is in church doctrine. Their training is rather minimal in scripture. Psychology is considered more helpful. For many, their main priority is to provide an income for their own family. So they feed themselves. I don’t have a problem with a man providing for his own as 1 Timothy 5:8 requires.

The problem is what they do to protect that income. Many times in order to protect the job they must deal with “problem members”. I have seen preachers encourage members to leave if the members were better equipped with scriptural knowledge. If the encouragement does not work they may get help from loyal members or even an eldership. Eventually the problem members either leave or are forced out. So they run the problem members off, they kill the fatlings.

One way to make sure members do not become a problem is to refuse to feed the sheep with the truth. Most lessons are very limited in scripture. Lessons will include plenty of fluff material, such as sports stories and references. Many preachers realize it is beneficial to make the members feel good about themselves and comfortable in their doctrine. The goal is to never feed the sheep. One such preacher told the congregation that Christian spiritual growth was optional unlike 2 Peter 3:18.

Of course the paid professional permanent employee preacher is never found in scripture. Members are happy to pay someone to do what members are supposed to do.

Ezekiel 34:2-3ff “Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel, prophesy, and tell them, even to the shepherds, Thus says the Lord Yahweh: Woe to the shepherds of Israel who feed themselves! Shouldn’t the shepherds feed the sheep? You eat the fat, and you clothe yourself with the wool, you kill the fatlings; but you don’t feed the sheep.”

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