I want you to open your Bible, this morning, as we wrap up our Shepherds Conference to 2 Timothy chapter 2. It would almost be a serious oversight if we would have a conference of pastors and church leaders and elders and not deal with portions of Scripture in 1 and 2 Timothy because they are, after all, the pastoral epistles and they speak directly to the responsibility that we have in serving the Lord in His church.
I always feel when we come to the end of the Shepherds Conference on this particular Sunday that there's a burden on my heart to speak to the pastors, even though the whole congregation of our church is here, to direct the message to them. And in so doing, you in no way ignore the congregation because whatever standard the Lord sets for the pastor is set so that the pastor can be an example to the flock. Paul said to Timothy, "Be an example to the believers in word and conduct." The Apostle Paul said that you are to follow me as I follow Christ.
So when we talk about the standard that God has established for the pastor, we are establishing that so that he can be the model for the people to follow. Whatever a pastor is to be in his own sanctification, whatever a pastor is to be in his own commitment to the Word of God, whatever a pastor is to be in his own behavior is so that he can be the model for what everybody else is to be. And so, we're simply lifting the standard of leadership so that leadership can lead people to the very standard which is their standard....