“Nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.”
those entrusted to you,
The word “entrusted” is literally “lot,”
“And they cast their lots, and the lot fell on Matthias. And he was numbered with the eleven apostles” (Acts 1:26).
Secular Greek used this word for an allotment of land assigned to a citizen by civic authorities. God portions a particular group of people to the pastor. This “lot” is the sphere of his pastoral care.
The Greek word means something allotted to the pastor. It is something specially assigned to him. God especially assigns congregations to pastors. The assembly is his sphere of service. He never earns or deserves this “lot.” God gives this responsibility to a pastor from his grace. No pastor deserves his church. God is the source of the allotting process. God gives it by his grace.
God especially allotted Israel to himself. God assigns them to his own will and choice.
“Yet they are Your people and Your inheritance [same word], whom You brought out by Your mighty power and by Your outstretched arm” (Deuteronomy 9:29).
Each pastor obtains his congregation by God’s grace.
God assigns the congregation as the responsibility of the pastor to take care of them. The church is not his but God’s. His duty is to care for them as a steward. He does not have the prerogative to lord it over those who are God’s people. God has the privilege of Lordship.
The congregation is not his, but his to manage. The pastor is the under-shepherd. The true shepherd is the Chief Shepherd, the Chief Pastor (1 Peter 5:4). The under-shepherd must give account to the Chief Shepherd. The under-pastor must give account to the Chief Pastor. The under-shepherd is simply a steward, a manager of someone else’s property.
No pastor should be pontifical or dictatorial. He dare not strut or swagger. A pastor should guard against taking on an air of infallibility.