Recently I Tweeted
“Senior pastor” is found in the Bible, its 1 Peter 5:4 and it refers to Jesus, not the CEO of your local church business.
Based off of this post on Alan Knox’s blog.
Here’s my extended take on the issue.
Senior pastors, indeed all professional pastors, bear a burden they were never meant to carry nor called to carry according to Scripture.
Nowhere in Scripture do we find one man saddled with the load the average church pastor is expected to carry. Contrary to John Piper, pastors today are, by and large, professionals. When you have a staff, budget, building, etc. you are a professional. In fact you are a business owner. A CEO.
Contrast this situation with what we find in Scripture where all believers are called to lift eachother up in mutual edification. Where no one man or elite group of men are commanded to lord over the flock from a position of authority.
To the contrary, the only form of leadership known in Scripture is servant leadership. Real servant leadership. Not the kind where the pastor takes home a nice check from his customers every month. Not the kind where the senior pastor gets to call all the shots (or influence the committees who give the appearance of calling the shots in most cases).
Real servant leadership where their leading is done through persuasive argument and not positional or credentialed authority lorded over “their” sheep.
I pity senior pastors, their existence harms everyone.