Development of Local Church (non-vocational) Elders1
10 Principles for Eldership
- An elder is a pastor is an elder.
- An elder is different than a "Super Deacon"
- An elder desires to be an elder.
- An elder is biblically qualified.
- An elder is recognized not chosen (manufactured).
- An elder knows what biblical eldership is. (in terms of duties, it's not sitting on a organization's "board")
- An elder identifies with the local church's distinctives.
- An elder should be developed slowly... but not too slow.
- An elder is recognized by the church.
- An elder is a co-equal under-shepherd.
Scriptural Qualifications for Eldership:
Above Reproach (1 Timothy 3.2; Titus 1.6)
- Not a Recent Convert (1 Timothy 3.6)
- Holy (Titus 1:8) - set apart for God in life and actions
- Upright (Titus 1:8) - righteous, just
- Self-Controlled (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1.8)
- Disciplined (Titus 1:8)
- Lover of Good (Titus 1:8)
- Not a Drunkard (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1.7)
- Living as an Example (1 Peter 5.2-3)
Family and Finances:
- The Husband of One Wife (1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:6)
- Not a Lover of Money (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1.7; 1 Peter 5.2)
- Manage his household well (1 Timothy 3:4) - (Submissive Children [1 Timothy 3:4]; Faithful Children [Titus 1:7])
Possession of a Positive Relational Character
- Shepherding willingly, eagerly, and gently (1 Peter 5.2-3)
- Respectable (1 Timothy 3:2)
- Hospitable (1 Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:8)
- Well thought of by Outsiders (1 Timothy 3:7)
Avoidance of a Negative Relational Character
- Not violent but gentle (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7)
- Not quarelsome (1 Timothy 3:3)
- Not quick tempered (Titus 1:7)
- Not arrogant (Titus 1:7)
Knowledge of and Ability to Handle God's Word
- Holding Firm to the Word (Titus 1:9)
- Able to Teach (1 Timothy 3:2)
- Sober-minded (1 Timothy 3:2)
Cornerstone West LA Eldership Process
The process of recognizing those men in the chrch who are functioning as elders, and ought to be recognized as such.
1. Identify men who are serving well as Servant Ministers
- Men who are faithful servant ministers
- Men who are consistently serving others
2. Observe the pastoral nature of the man's ministry
- Is his ministry primarily service or pastoral?
- Is he currently shepherding anyone?
3. Evaluate the man's calling
- Does he aspire to pastoral ministry?
- Do those around him affirm this aspiration?
4. Evaluate the man's qualification
- Is he above reproach in the biblical qualifications?
5. Invite the man to observe eldership
- Invite him to pursue relationships with current elders to observe their life
- Invite him to elder meetings to observe their inner workings
6. Evaluate the man's identification with Cornerstone's distinctives
- Can he articulate the truth contained in the statement of faith?
- Does he understand and affirm the philosophy of ministry?
7. Affirm the man's eldership
- The man's wife affirms his calling and qualifications
- The man's Christian community affirms his calling and qualifications
- The current council of elders affirms the man's calling and qualifications
- The current church membership affirms the man's calling and qualifications
More in Blog
May 9, 2017Notes on a Biblical-Theological Framework in thinking about Race and Ethnicity
October 14, 2015Cultivating a Culture of Evangelism in Your Church (with resources linked)
February 3, 2015The Gospel And Work