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Guardians of the Tent


Paul likened pastors to the Levites of ancient Israel (1 Cor. 9), who were guardians of the tent and testimony of the Lord (Num. 1.53). In what sense are pastors "guardians" in the household of faith today? Are we not called to guard the Gospel and the ministry of the Word against those who would minimize or distort it? And what about the worship of God? Paul's lengthy instructions to the Corinthians concerning worship indicate that this, too, must be carefully guarded. The work of disciple-making, by which the saints are equipped to do the work of ministry (Eph. 4.11, 12); the work of shepherding God's flock (1 Pt. 5.1-3); the ministry itself, against those unfit for such a calling (Acts 8.9-24); and our own souls and teaching (1 Tim. 4.16).

In all these areas the Scriptures and the heritage of the Church present a rich trove of holy things that ministers must daily labor to guard.

If we fail to guard the household of God in each of these areas, the influences of contemporary culture, the winds of false doctrine, and the self-serving designs of false teachers will corrupt and consume the flock, and the glory of the Lord will depart His Church as surely as it departed Israel in the days of Ezekiel.

Pastors, are we faithful guardians of the tent and testimony of the Lord?

T. M. Moore

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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