“Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.”
King James Version (KJV)
13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you - The word implies also, that lead or guide you; namely, in truth and holiness. And submit yourselves - Give up (not your conscience or judgment, but) your own will, in all things purely indifferent. For they watch over your souls - With all zeal and diligence, they guard and caution you against all danger. As they that must give account - To the great Shepherd, for every part of their behaviour toward you. How vigilant then ought every pastor to be! How careful of every soul committed to his charge! That they may do this - Watch over you. With joy and not with groans - He is not a good shepherd, who does not either rejoice over them, or groan for them. The groans of other creatures are heard: how much more shall these come up in the ears of God ! Whoever answers this character of a Christian pastor may undoubtedly demand this obedience.
Heb 13:17 Obey them that have the rule over you. Your elders or bishops. For they watch for your souls. Give them deference on this account, and because they must give account to the Master of those committed to their trust.