In his introduction, “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” This charge from Acts 20:28 only is the beginning of a solemn and overarching task to be personally involved and disciple all of your congregants. Richard Baxter’s plea for shepherding his flock continues with a charge to pastors to verify their own spiritual walk and then walks them through various disciplines, strategies and goals to guide and instruct their congregation.
Richard Baxter (1615–1691) was one of the preeminent Puritan leaders of his day, the most successful Puritan pastor, and the most productive Puritan writer. Ordained at 23, he spent 17 fruitful years as curate at Kidderminster, England. He was ejected from the Church of England by the Act of Uniformity in 1662 and was imprisoned at least three times for his preaching. The author of more than 150 published treatises.