Thom Rainer: Shepherding the Shepherd 2013 – Breakout Session

by FBCMagnolia

Thom Rainer has served as president of LifeWay Christian Resources since 2006. He spoke on “Reigniting Hope and Vision in a Struggling Church” and “How to be a Leader Who Reaches the Unchurched.” A native of Alabama, Rainer previously served as dean of the Billy Graham School of Missions and Evangelism at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville.

Thom Rainer leads a breakout session on “How to be a Leader Who Reaches the Unchurched”.

The Audio of the message can be heard here.


Notes and Quotes

– #1 Characteristic of a Growing church is that they are Equipping the Saints.

Two Problem We Know of in Reaching the Unchurched

1.) Churches struggle to train leaders

2.) Overall, the church in America is not healthy.

How Many SBC Members Does it Take to Win a Person to Christ?

46:1 ratio

[11] And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, [12] to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, [13] until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ,

(Ephesians 4:11-13 ESV)

– We need a training revival!


Moses – Joshua and Jethro

Rabbi System – 1 on 1 relationship

Dark Years

– Jerusalem to Rome

– The Church Hierarchy

– Vicarious Christians


– Priesthood of Believers

The Reality: Why Pastors Do Not Train Their Leaders

1.) Do not Know How

2.) There is No Time

3.) There is no Plan

4.) It is Expensive

Life Way’s Vision to Serve Churches is Ministry Grid

5 Key Principals

1.) Leaders follow Acts 6:3 Principle: Give up ministry

[3] Therefore, brothers, pick out from among you seven men of good repute, full of the Spirit and of wisdom, whom we will appoint to this duty.

(Acts 6:3 ESV)

2.) Leaders follow the Acts 6:4 principle: Prayer and Ministry of the Word.

[4] But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”
(Acts 6:4 ESV)

[7] And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.
(Acts 6:7 ESV)

1.) Preaching Flourished

2.) More people accepted Christ

3.) The Hard Core Unchurched were reached for Christ.

3.) Leaders follow Acts 2:46 principle: Equip in Groups

[46] And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts,
(Acts 2:46 ESV)

4.) Begin with a few

– Jesus had 12

5.) Eat an Elephant

– A good leader is one that is far enough in front that people follow them, but not so far in front that the people mistake them as the enemy and shoot them in the rear.