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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope – part 53

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Acts 20:28

From the Confessions: Treatise on the Power and Primacy of the Pope

Jerome therefore, teaches that that the distinctive grades of bishop and elder (or pastor) are by human authority. The subject itself declares this, because the power is the same, as has been stated above. Afterwards, one thing made a distinction between bishops and pastors namely, ordination, because it was determined that one bishop should ordain ministers in a number of churches.

Pulling It Together

Here is the distinguishing labor of all ministers (shepherds) of the gospel: take care of the flock. But how is this accomplished? While there are many tasks in ministering to the needs of a congregation, the chief function, the one that must weave through all other responsibilities, is preaching and teaching the Word. Paul stresses the importance of this charge by saying we are to preach and teach all the time (2 Tim 4:2). The only difference between a bishop and a pastor is that a bishop ordains new pastors. And why is a bishop assigned this duty but that more ministers will preach God’s Word.

Prayer: Lord, raise up new shepherds for your flocks. Amen.

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Dwell In My Love! - Word of Life Series (Unit 3) is a resource for those looking to develop small groups built around the Word of God. This model of small-group ministry is an excellent tool for evangelism since it is rooted in prayer and Scripture. Its primary focus is to empower those who believe in Jesus Christ to be comfortable sharing their faith and inviting others to experience a transformed life in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Meant for use in Small Group gathering, each of the six sessions is based on a primary Scripture text, with intentional time for reflection. There are questions, prayer, faith sharing, and mini evangelism case-studies. The series would be helpful for those involved in starting a Bible study fellowship, house church, or mission congregation. It can also be used by established congregations to aid in establishing a small group ministry.

• Unit 1   • Unit 2   • Unit 3

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