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How to pray for your pastor, according to John Gill

August 2, 2007

John Gill in the Body of Practical Divinity, lists various duties that church members have toward their pastor. The third is that they must pray for him. Gill then elaborates on the things for which the members should intercede on behalf of their elder.

Thirdly, another branch of duty in church members to their pastors, is suggested in Hebrews 13:18 “Pray for us,” for us ministers; this is often inculcated in the sacred writings, as being of great moment and importance (see Eph. 6:19; Col. 4:3; 2 Thess. 3:1); and members of churches should be solicitous at the throne of grace for their ministers.

2c1. With respect to their private studies and preparation for their work; that they may be led to suitable subjects, and be furnished with suitable matter; that their understanding may be opened to understand the word; that they may be led into the depths and mysteries of the gospel; that their gifts may be increased; and that they may be diligent, industrious, and laborious in their work.

2c2. With respect to their public ministrations; that they may come forth richly fraught with gospel truths; that they may have freedom and utterance in the delivery of them; that they may speak them boldly, faithfully, and fully, as they ought to be spoken; and that their labours may be blessed to saints and sinners: and unless members of churches are observant of this their duty, they cannot expect the word will be blessed to them.

2c3. With respect to the world, and their conduct in it; that they may be kept from the evil of the world, that the ministry be not blamed; and from the temptations of Satan, who has a peculiar spite against them; and that they may be delivered from evil and unreasonable men, who, as much as can be, endeavour to discourage them, and hinder them in their work; and they should pray for them, that they may neither be intimidated by the frowns of the world, nor allured by the flatteries of it; and they should pray for their temporal good, for their bodily health, and for the sparing of their lives for farther usefulness, and for every thing needful for them. This part of duty is enforced with the following reason; “For we trust we have a good conscience,” exercised in an upright discharge of the ministerial work; “in all things, willing to live honestly;” not only as men, but as ministers, faithfully dispensing the word of truth; the temptations to the contrary being many, prayer is desired by them.

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