The above quote and title of this posting is from one Mr. Sherlock Holmes. It was his trade to know what others did not. It was essential to his success. Investigators and interrogators will tell you to avoid asking questions you do not already know the answers to.
“…[T[hy rod and [T]hy staff they comfort me.” (Psalm 23:4 b)
” [the Lord Jesus] needed not that any should testify of man: for [H]e knew what was in man.” (John 2:25)
In Keller’s classic book, “A Shepherd Looks at Psalm 23” He expounds upon that great psalm with great insight. This insight comes from years of experience as a shepherd of sheep.
One of these insights is on the shepherd’s staff. Keller explains that one of the uses of the staff is to lift up the sheep’s heavy wool and to look underneath at the skin to determine the health of the sheep and it’s skin.
This is a beautiful picture of a loving Christ-ian pastor’s relationship with those God has sent him to. It is the pastor’s call to use his staff or Bible to inspect the lives of his flock. Sometimes he will have to look “underneath” the believer’s wool. He does not do this to expose the believer’s “underneath” to others or to hurt but to help the believer to live a healthier Christ-ian life.
Some have called this meddling into things that are not the pastor’s business. This is not true. This is the pastor performing his responsibility that has been given him by God above. Believe me, You would rather the pastor uncover hidden sin and help you confess it than for God to bring it to light.
Looking underneath the believer’s wool is not especially pleasant for the preacher. It is something he wishes he did not have to do. But do it he must. Pastor’s will give an account to God sometime for those to whom God had sent him. It is better to take care of hidden sins and issues here than it will be there.
While it is not pleasant for the pastor to look underneath a Christ-ians wool he is always prepared to look underneath the wool of the wolf in sheep’s clothing.
It is the pastor’s business to know what others do not.