Why Lead Worship? – Part 4 – God is Serious About Shepherding

Written by Jonno Warmington

I argued in my previous post that the particular trait David exhibited which was ‘after’ God’s own heart was that he was first and foremost a shepherd. He was commended because he dealt well with God’s most loved possession – His people.

If His people are God’s prized possession then the shepherding and leading of His people is naturally an important thing to God. This is why He places such an emphasis on the care with which the role must be handled. In fact, scripture says that those who would lead His people will be held to account for those they lead (Heb 13:17, Ex 34:10). It is also why scripture doesn’t pull any punches in its harsh treatment of false shepherds. Ezekiel 34 gives us a good picture of a God who sets Himself against false shepherds who would use the flock to their own benefit, requiring a reckoning for their abuse. It also shows us how He will rescue His sheep from these false shepherds. A shepherding role is not something to be taken lightly but when we are motivated by love in obedience to God we are taking on His own heart! We love what He loves.

I believe that this is an important part of what made David a worshipper that pleased God. He loved God and proved it by how he loved and led God’s people.

If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.
– 1 John 4:20-21 ESV

So what does all this have to do with “leading worship”? Well, quite frankly, I believe it points to the role that must be adopted by anyone who would step up to lead a gathering of the local church in any of the things that we gather to do – including worshipping God in song. We must first take on the role of a shepherd.

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