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The Reformers & Paul the Pastor

Yesterday I received my copy of Gerald Bray’s inaugural volume on Galatians and Ephesians in the Reformation Commentary on Scripture Series. It looks great!

In his introduction Bray makes the point of the pastoral emphasis of the Reformers and how Paul was a key example to them.

“They [the Reformers] were also determined to imitate the apostle in showing concern for the spiritual welfare of the churches under their care.  To them Paul was a pastor as much as an evangelist, and his epistles reveal his pastoral role more than anything else.  They knew from their own experience how easily a church could fall away from the preaching of the gospel if it lacked good teaching and sustained discipline, and much of their interest in Paul focused on this.  They also knew from experience that a faithful minister of the gospel will suffer persecution for his efforts, and here again Paul provided an obvious model, not the least because he did not let his chains stop him from proclaiming the message and caring for the churches he had founded and nurtured.” (xli-xlii).

We still need to see these lessons in Paul today.

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