The Bible lays out the definitions of both an overseer (under shepherd) and a hireling. John 10:11-13 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is an hireling, and careth not for the sheep. (KJV) 1 Tim. 3:1-3 Here is a trustworthy saying: If anyone sets his heart on being an overseer, he desires a noble task. Now the overseer must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. (NIV) Titus 1:7-13 Since an overseer is entrusted with God's work, he must be blamelessâ€â€not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. Rather he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it. For there are many rebellious people, mere talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision group. They must be silenced, because they are ruining whole households by teaching things they ought not to teachâ€â€and that for the sake of dishonest gain. Even one of their own prophets has said, "Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons." This testimony is true. Therefore, rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith. (NIV) A hireling does not really care about being a watchman, but is more concerned with protecting his reputation, position and income. A true watchman will guard the flock against wolves from within (Acts 20:30) and without (Acts 20:29) no matter the cost to his reputation, position or income. Following is a little quiz you can take to see if you are a true Biblical under shepherd as a leader in your church, are becoming a hireling, or are one now.
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