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Thread: Qualification for being an Elder

  1. #46
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Brents View Post
    Forgive me; in reviewing the qualifications for elders I did not remember the continuation of 1 Timothy where the qualifications for deacons are listed. You are correct, deacons also must be married.

    No cop-out. Simply stating what Scripture tells us about some of the Apostles. Most of the Apostles family life is not mentioned in Scripture. And I didn't say that "only Peter" understood leadership.
    I believe that Peter expressed a better understanding of the scriptures and that it did not mean to be in leadership, a man MUST be married and HAVE more than one child.

    I believe that "legalism" has become a euphemism for "we don't have to do what the Bible says" in many cases today. Granted, there are many places where we are given freedom to do things many different ways, and to remain adamant on these issues is wrong. The Bible says nothing about specific worship practices when we gather together (ie. instrumental music, 1 cup or many at communion, how many prayers to lead, how many songs to sing, etc.). But we are given specifics in many places, like with the qualifications for elders. To disregard those specifics is to dismiss the authority of God in our lives through the Holy Spirit inspired Word He has passed down to us.
    You have your interpretation of the letter of qualification to be a leader. I differ due to the examples of the scriptures I raised that show that leadership is not required to be married and can be celibate.

    It is funny how there are the extremes concerning this. Catholicism is one extreme where it is a requirement that leadership BE celibate. On the flip side of the extreme, leadership MUST be married and also HAVE children.

    I find that based on the scriptures, there is the middle where balance is proper and we are guided that IF a man is married and led to be a leader in a church, then Paul shows us proper conduct that is to be what is considered beyond reproach. Beyond reproach, IOWs there is NO DRAMA in a leaders life that can distract from his service to God in a leadership position. This lack of drama concerning marriage is made clear.

    So to demand celibacy, is legalism. To demand marriage/with children is also legalism... based on a balanced understanding of all the scriptures.

    As for people calling you "pastor", I would never allow anyone to call me by that title, or any other except brother, because of the letter and spirit of Jesus' instruction in Matt 23:6-12. I sometimes attend a Messianic Synagogue here in the Atlanta, GA area, and everyone calls the minister there "Rabbi", but I refuse to call him that, and have told him that I will continue to refuse, because of this passage. Yes, the position of elder gives a man authority in the congregation over which he is appointed, but we are not to address him as such the way most congregations do today. I address the elders of the congregation where I am a member as "Brother ..." (and their wives as "Sister ..."), or simply by their first name. I address every other member of the congregation in this same manner.
    I too prefer to be called brother. Some in our church call me minister... pastor or minister never sounded right (to me). But I am not gonna be hard on people that tell me that they are only following what the Spirit tells them. Especially when we've met for the first time.
    Slug1--out

    ~At the end of the day, the Cross we bear... is small!~

    ~Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,~


    ~"It is one thing to speak God's name in a message but another to speak of God's standards in a message. The name of God is not removed from many a message today but the standards of God... ARE removed."~

    ~"Psalm 106:23 Therefore He said that He would destroy them, Had not Moses His chosen one stood before Him in the breach, To turn away His wrath, lest He destroy them."...
    So don't say that God never meant to destroy the Hebrews, to do so, makes God a liar.~



  2. #47

    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by stoomart View Post
    Again I believe Tim was a gifted minister/teacher ordained by prophecy and the laying on of hands by the eldership (1 Timothy 4:14), but I don't see him as being an elder. I will study Timothy more now to make sure I'm not missing anything.
    Timothy and Titus were not elders since they were traveling to churches to put things in order at the behest of Paul, or to convey his instructions. Elders were shepherds who remained with their flocks. They came out of their churches and remained with their churches from what we see in Scripture.

  3. #48
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel567 View Post
    Timothy and Titus were not elders since they were traveling to churches to put things in order at the behest of Paul, or to convey his instructions. Elders were shepherds who remained with their flocks. They came out of their churches and remained with their churches from what we see in Scripture.
    Trying to recall... wasn't Timothy ultimately overseer of the church of/in Ephesus and Titus ultimately was the overseer of/in Crete?
    Slug1--out

    ~At the end of the day, the Cross we bear... is small!~

    ~Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,~


    ~"It is one thing to speak God's name in a message but another to speak of God's standards in a message. The name of God is not removed from many a message today but the standards of God... ARE removed."~

    ~"Psalm 106:23 Therefore He said that He would destroy them, Had not Moses His chosen one stood before Him in the breach, To turn away His wrath, lest He destroy them."...
    So don't say that God never meant to destroy the Hebrews, to do so, makes God a liar.~



  4. #49
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Brents View Post
    I would have to disagree. Single men are not the husband of one wife. There is nothing in either of the passages that lay out the qualification of eldership that says, "if he is married, then he must have only one wife". The passages also say his children (plural) must be faithful and well behaved. So if he does not have children, he again does not qualify for the position of elder. That is not to say he cannot serve the Church; only that he is not qualified to be an elder.

    I am not an elder, nor do I qualify for the position yet.

    I have been married twice (my first wife died of cancer). Because I was released from the bond to my first wife when she died, I believe that I still fit this qualification of being the husband of one wife. But I only have one child so far (she is 17 months old). We are working on our second child, but until they are old enough to be demonstrably well behaved, and come to their own belief and faith in Christ, I will not qualify to be named as an elder of the Church.
    If you have a wife, be the husband of ONE wife. Man, it's not as difficult as you want it to be. If you hold to the standard you're imposing then you would not qualify. It doesn't say that if your wife died. Why are you making an exception for your situation?

    Your interpretation is a perfect example of the letter killing.

  5. #50
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Slug1 View Post
    Trying to recall... wasn't Timothy ultimately overseer of the church of/in Ephesus and Titus ultimately was the overseer of/in Crete?
    You are correct.

  6. #51
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Brents View Post
    I would have to disagree. Single men are not the husband of one wife. There is nothing in either of the passages that lay out the qualification of eldership that says, "if he is married, then he must have only one wife". The passages also say his children (plural) must be faithful and well behaved. So if he does not have children, he again does not qualify for the position of elder. That is not to say he cannot serve the Church; only that he is not qualified to be an elder.

    I am not an elder, nor do I qualify for the position yet.

    I have been married twice (my first wife died of cancer). Because I was released from the bond to my first wife when she died, I believe that I still fit this qualification of being the husband of one wife. But I only have one child so far (she is 17 months old). We are working on our second child, but until they are old enough to be demonstrably well behaved, and come to their own belief and faith in Christ, I will not qualify to be named as an elder of the Church.
    I guess Jesus isn't qualified to be an elder. And God the Father? Well, he's divorced and have you seen the way some of His children act? (Tongue firmly planted in cheek.)
    Matt 9:13
    13 "But go and learn what this means: ' I DESIRE COMPASSION,AND NOT SACRIFICE,' for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners."
    NASU

  7. #52
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Brother Mark View Post
    I guess Jesus isn't qualified to be an elder. And God the Father? Well, he's divorced and have you seen the way some of His children act? (Tongue firmly planted in cheek.)
    Now that's an exhortation, in an attempt to help people understand the balance of Paul's guidance concerning church leadership and also remaining celibate as a leader in a church.
    Slug1--out

    ~At the end of the day, the Cross we bear... is small!~

    ~Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,~


    ~"It is one thing to speak God's name in a message but another to speak of God's standards in a message. The name of God is not removed from many a message today but the standards of God... ARE removed."~

    ~"Psalm 106:23 Therefore He said that He would destroy them, Had not Moses His chosen one stood before Him in the breach, To turn away His wrath, lest He destroy them."...
    So don't say that God never meant to destroy the Hebrews, to do so, makes God a liar.~



  8. #53
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Doug Brents View Post
    I would have to disagree. Single men are not the husband of one wife. There is nothing in either of the passages that lay out the qualification of eldership that says, "if he is married, then he must have only one wife". The passages also say his children (plural) must be faithful and well behaved. So if he does not have children, he again does not qualify for the position of elder. That is not to say he cannot serve the Church; only that he is not qualified to be an elder.
    This is a prime example of taking scripture to the letter and being blind to context of other scriptures. (thus called killing scripture with the letter, letter killing for short)

    I am not an elder, nor do I qualify for the position yet.

    I have been married twice (my first wife died of cancer). Because I was released from the bond to my first wife when she died, I believe that I still fit this qualification of being the husband of one wife.
    This is a prime example of taking the guidance for leadership that Paul gave to the church and BALANCE this guidance with a proper INCLUSION of context.

    I have spoke with others in the Body who WILL NOT deviate from the letter and you lost your wife due to cancer (my condolences), no more wife... NOT qualified. Oh, you married to a 2nd wife after the first passed away... NOT qualified, ONLY ONE WIFE ONLY

    Based on your post so far, you are picking and choosing when and where to apply context failing to apply a proper balanced context in other area's of this topic.

    But I only have one child so far (she is 17 months old). We are working on our second child, but until they are old enough to be demonstrably well behaved, and come to their own belief and faith in Christ, I will not qualify to be named as an elder of the Church.
    Now we're back to the letter so tell me... if God was to "call" you to leadership in your church, are you gonna say NO to His call because you HAVE TO WAIT for your children to make a choice to believe in God before you are qualified??

    You do understand you serve a God that will break all the "rules" and He specifically PICKS people who are NOT qualified and through their fear in Him, fulfill any calling that man says (including oneself) they are not qualified for? Churches take Paul's guide and turn it into "the rules" and you took context of scripture and BROKE the marriage rule Ya don't think God will break others as well since He knows the TRUE intent of that guidance?

    You already made a balanced contextual positioning concerning Paul's guidance concerning marriage... why go back to JUST the letter concerning more than one child and also, WAIT until children PROVE themselves faithful... when God may be calling you NOW?

    To me, and I pray this doesn't offend you... your example, based on the fruit of your posts, is one where satan is preventing worthy God fearing men from church leadership and satan does this through either legalism or religiousness (serving and following "rules/traditions") and those bound in that legalism/religiousness.. are victims due to their blindness caused by satan's deception.

    Brother... believe me, if the church God led me too to serve in leadership approached me and asked I take a lead role in the leadership and I didn't want to do it... I would take the same line you take. Sorry, I'm not qualified because I only have one child. But... God's lead is more important, so here I am in leadership in a church and I have one child and God has blessed me though obedience in service to Him.
    Slug1--out

    ~At the end of the day, the Cross we bear... is small!~

    ~Titus 2:11 For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men,~


    ~"It is one thing to speak God's name in a message but another to speak of God's standards in a message. The name of God is not removed from many a message today but the standards of God... ARE removed."~

    ~"Psalm 106:23 Therefore He said that He would destroy them, Had not Moses His chosen one stood before Him in the breach, To turn away His wrath, lest He destroy them."...
    So don't say that God never meant to destroy the Hebrews, to do so, makes God a liar.~



  9. #54
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    Re: Qualification for being an Elder

    Quote Originally Posted by Kalahari View Post
    An elder is in charge of the household of Christ. If He can't control his own household, how can he be in charge of God's household? The point is look at the fruit of an elder before you elect him.
    Actually the context of the Titus passage can be found in Deuteronomy 6. We are to train up our children in the Way, but we can't save them; that is God's role. Since the Torah has remedies for rebellious sons, the expectation isn't that literally all children have to be believers without exception. For one thing the only true "test" for a believer is when they stand before Christ. Either He knows them or He doesn't. We have no way of knowing that, or even if/when God will come into their lives in relationship - so the best way to interpret Titus is by the entire context of God's Word (Scripture teaching Scripture), not by doctrines of any particular sect of Christianity. To demand all children of an elder be believers is works based. God saves us, not our parents, not our pastors, not our friends, and certainly not our interpretation of Scripture.

    For another example "letter killing," Titus also has a qualification of "a man of one wife." Some denominations insist that an elder must have had only one wife in his life. Really? Because I know plenty of elders in those congregations held to that standard who have had numerous sexual encounters before they were saved, but if they have some paper that says they were married (even before they were saved) and divorced, then all bets are off for them being an elder. Does anyone see the hypocrisy of this doctrine? Why are we held accountable for a divorce before we were saved, but we're ok if we have an illegitimate son or daughter before we were saved? How is it that God can make us a new creation upon salvation, and obliterate the old man, but some congregations insist that one part of the "old man" must accompany someone through their life and be a hindrance to their service to God? Does God forgive and renew us for everything EXCEPT that one thing (divorce?).

    For any congregation leaders to hinder the God given gifts of ANY of HIS servants to manifest in their ministry because of their gender or what they did before they were saved is hindering God, and they will answer before God for standing in His way.

    We really really need to "test" Scripture in context of the entirety of God's Word rather than pulling out one passage and creating strange doctrines around them.
    Those who seek God with all their heart will find Him and be given sight. Those who seek their own agenda will remain blind.

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