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二○一九年二月二日/二月三日                                                                                           Click here for English version

聖道與靈性關顧

陳劍雲牧師

教牧職事,所為何事?這個提問,不是質問,而是牧者在神的道面前須有的省察,使我們重新聚焦。這問題不只是蒙召作牧職的人要問,教會會眾也要問。凡屬耶穌基督的人、與蒙召作牧職的人,都互為肢體,各按各職,互相建立,一同長成耶穌基督的身量。在教牧與肢體的關係中,若肢體能明白教牧職事的重中之重,大家便能同得屬靈的好處。

改教神學家加爾文(John Calvin)說:「無論在哪裡,我們若發現神的道,被人純正地宣講,聽到,而且聖禮也按照基督的吩咐施行,毫無疑問,那裡就有了上帝的教會。」所以,相信不會有人反對,宣講聖道是教牧的核心職事之一。宣講聖道並不是宣講會眾想聽、耳順和覺得動聽的信息,而是忠實地讓那使人知罪、悔改的律法被聆聽,同時讓人在傾聽福音時得到生命的解放和幫助。在聆聽聖道的同時,恩典會藉著律法和福音賜下給我們的。福音不只是給未信主的人聽,也是不斷叫主的門徒得幫助的好消息。

然而,人會因為隱密的罪和不願悔改的心而心硬,甚至只聽到「恩典」的信息而越加放肆,錯誤地傾聽福音,拒絕律法叫人行義的教導。因此,教牧和領袖很重要的職事,是作出「靈性關顧」的服事。潘霍華(Dietrich Bonhoeffer)主張,靈性關顧有別於「靈性指引」。前者是從宣講上帝的話語出發的,而後者則是兩個人在同一平面上進行,其中一人暫時將自己放在對方的引導之下。在靈性關顧之中,牧者按著神的道詢問和聆聽信徒用自己的語言表達出個人的靈性狀況,促使他們面對那要揭露的罪,以免恩典被扭曲。所以,靈性關顧是一種特殊的宣講,發生在生命的對談之中。靈性關顧讓人與上帝相遇,而不只是隨意聽聽關於上帝和靈性的知識。

弟兄姊妹,領受恩典須先要「知罪」,知罪不是要我們活在罪疚和重擔下,卻是要使我們成為能傾聽福音和得著解救、幫助的人。因此,請為你的牧者祈禱,讓他們能在講壇宣講和靈性關顧中,都按著正意分解真理的道,並與你一同站在神活潑的道底下,被同一福音釋放,為同一律法所對質。請你也為自己祈禱,求神幫助你傾聽律法與福音,得著行義的指引和真正自由的生命。教牧要忠心履行本身的職事,但有效的職事是你降服於聖靈和聖道面前,才能發生。求主幫助我們。






Pastor's Sharing
The Word and Spiritual Care
Rev Lawrence Chan

What is a pastor's job? This is no interrogation. It is something a pastor needs to reflect on before the Word in order to refocus on God. Such a question is not just for those called into pastoral ministry. It should also be raised by the congregation. All who belong to Christ and those called into pastoral ministry are parts of the same body, each performing its duty to build up one another and maturing together to attain to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. In pastor/congregation relationship, it will benefit both parties spiritually if church members know what the most important pastoral duty is.

Reformation theologian John Calvin has said: "Wherever we see the Word of God sincerely preached and heard, wherever we see the sacraments administered according to the institution of Christ, there we cannot have any doubt that the Church of God has some existence…" No one will deny that a core pastoral duty is proclamation of the Word. Proclaiming the Word is not preaching what the congregation likes to hear, what appeals to the ear or what sounds great. Rather, it is to honestly convey the gospel – the law that makes people recognize their sin and repent, and in doing so receive freedom and divine help in their lives. In listening to the Word, grace is given to us through the law and the gospel. The gospel is not just for unbelievers. It is also good news that continually helps disciples.

Nevertheless, human hearts can harden because of hidden sins and unwillingness to repent. People may only hear grace and further indulge in sin. They are not hearing the gospel correctly and are refusing the teaching of the law to do good. Therefore, a major ministry of pastors and church leaders is "spiritual care." Dietrich Bonhoeffer has differentiated between spiritual care and spiritual direction. While the former starts with proclaiming the Word of God, the latter is practiced by two persons on the same plane with one of them temporarily putting oneself under the other's guidance. In spiritual care, the pastor asks and listens to the personal spirituality as expressed by the believer. He acts in accordance with the Word of God. He helps the believer face the sin to be revealed so that grace will not be distorted. Therefore, spiritual care is a special kind of preaching. It takes place in life exchanges. It lets people encounter God rather than just casually receiving information about God and spirituality.

Dear brothers and sisters, admitting sin must precede the receipt of grace. Admitting sin not only frees us from guilty feeling and burden. It also enables us to correctly hear the gospel and receive salvation and help. Therefore, please pray for your pastors so that in preaching and spiritual care, they can correctly handle the Word of truth and both you and them can stand beneath the living Word of God, be freed by the same gospel and interrogated by the same law. Please pray also for yourselves. Pray that God will help you listen to the law and the gospel and receive direction to do good as well as lead a life that is truly free. Pastors should faithfully carry out their duties knowing that effective execution of duties does not come until we surrender ourselves to the Holy Spirit and the Word. May God help us.