OPEN HEAVENS DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DATE: WEDNESDAY 24TH APRIL 2019
THEME: CARING FOR THE SHEPHERD.
If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things? 1 Corinthians 9:11
READ: 1 Corinthians 9:6-14
6 Or I only and Barnabas, have not we power to forbear working?
7 Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges? who planteth a vineyard, and eateth not of the fruit thereof? or who feedeth a flock, and eateth not of the milk of the flock?
8 Say I these things as a man? or saith not the law the same also?
9 For it is written in the law of Moses, thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?
10 Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope should be partaker of his hope.
11 If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?
12 If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power; but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ.
13 Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple? and they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar?
14 Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.
The word “shepherd” is commonly used by Christians to describe pastors, evangelist, missionaries and others who play leadership roles in the body of Christ. God expects members of the body of Christ to provide all that is necessary for the health and welfare of church leaders, as they labor to see to the spiritual wellbeing of the flock of Jesus Christ. Caring for the shepherd can take the form of gifts or voluntary service from individuals or organized groups. Care can also come in the form of wages from the ministry church through which the shepherd serves God. In this sense, wages can be defined as any form of economic compensation received in exchange for labor or service rendered. This may also include accommodation, provisions and additional benefits in cash or kind. The Holy Spirit revealed God’s mind on the matter, saying in 1 Corinthians 9:13-14:
“Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple? and they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar? Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.”
The Bible clearly teaches the right of pastors and spiritual leaders to receive care and wages in any form considered appropriate b members of the Body of Christ they are serving. Galatians 6:6 says:
“Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.”
Also, in 1 Timothy 5:17-18, the Bible instructed that the elder who rules well and labors in teaching the word and doctrine should not only be appropriately compensated but should also be counted worthy of double honor. Above all, our Lord Jesus Christ repeatedly hammered on the fact that the workman in God’s vineyard deserves whatever care or wages he or she receives (Matthew 10:10, Luke 10:7).
Moreover, caring for shepherds ordained by God is a route to irreversible blessings. Some ignorantly see this as a means to making pastors rich, but the Bible and life experiences speak for themselves: the widow of Zarephath, the woman of Shunem, the words of Jesus in Mark 9:41, and testimonies too numerous to mention all serve as examples to follow in this regard.
Father, grant me grace to consistently take care of Your shepherds in Jesus’ Name.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Genesis 29-30
AUTHOR: PASTOR E. A. ADEBOYE
HYMN 4: TAKE MY LIFE, AND LET IT BE
1.Take my life and let it be
Consecrated, Lord, to Thee.
Take my moments and my days,
Let them flow in endless praise,
Let them flow in endless praise.
2.Take my hands and let them move
At the impulse of Thy love.
Take my feet and let them be
Swift and beautiful for Thee,
Swift and beautiful for Thee.
3.Take my voice and let me sing,
Always, only for my King.
Take my lips and let them be
Filled with messages from Thee,
Filled with messages from Thee.
4. Take my silver and my gold,
Not a mite would I withhold.
Take my intellect and use
Every pow’r as Thou shalt choose,
Every pow’r as Thou shalt choose.
5. Take my will and make it Thine,
It shall be no longer mine.
Take my heart, it is Thine own,
It shall be Thy royal throne,
It shall be Thy royal throne.
6. Take my love, my Lord, I pour
At Thy feet its treasure store.
Take myself and I will be
Ever, only, all for Thee,
Ever, only, all for Thee.