Church Polity

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by dan53, Feb 7, 2002.

  1. dan53

    dan53
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    What do you guys and gals think of an "Elder-led" model for church government ? This is of course contrary to Baptist heritage but I believe it is scriptural !

    Comments ? :cool: :D [​IMG]
     
  2. TomVols

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    Actually, not at all. You may mean recent history, but the pastor is considered an elder according to NT. The church is led by the elder(s), served by the deacons, and governed by itself.
     
  3. dan53

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    We are starting with three elders (the pastor being the teaching elder) and then praying for deacons etc... This church has had a history of the traditional congregational government and is voting this Sunday to goto the Elder-Led model. :D :D
     
  4. Chris Temple

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by dan53:
    We are starting with three elders (the pastor being the teaching elder) and then praying for deacons etc... This church has had a history of the traditional congregational government and is voting this Sunday to goto the Elder-Led model. :D :D<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    Good news. Deacons are not elders, and should not rule as such. Deacons are servants of the Body.

    It helps if they are believers, too!
    :eek: :eek:
     
  5. dan53

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    Sorry if I mis-spoke. I understand that deacons are NOT elders; I also understand that they are to serve. Just like all of us, they are servant leaders to the flock in which God has called them. We are raising our own up from our midst.

    Dan :cool:
     
  6. MarciontheModerateBaptist

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR> The church is led by the elder(s), served by the deacons, and governed by itself. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I agree with Tom. I think it would be more biblical for a church to be led by more than one elder. I do not think deacons should have any more governing power than the average member. The elders should be accountable ultimately to God, but also, in a sense, to the local body they serve.

    Daniel Payne
     
  7. Jonathan

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by dan53:
    What do you guys and gals think of an "Elder-led" model for church government ? This is of course contrary to Baptist heritage but I believe it is scriptural !

    Comments ? :cool: :D [​IMG]
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I love the "Elder-led" model for church government. Most Baptist churches that have held my membership have one of the following models of church governance:

    1. Pastor as dictator. Usually found in churches where the founding pastor is still pastor (requires the church to have been founded on this model).
    2. Deacons as perpetuating board of directors. Usually occurs in churches where pastoral tenures are short. In the absence of consistency in the pulpit, the deacons simply assume more and more control.
    3. Power families (this model is commonly called "congregational") rule. This model can happen along side #2. New pastors are usually warned of who these folks are (often by folks who are on their way to another church) and how they should finesse them.

    My opinion is that we Baptists like our own control so much that we refuse to even consider a model that has multiple elders.
     
  8. Siegfried

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    Wow. I didn't know there were so many Baptists who are willing to be biblical rather than denominational in their church polity.
     
  9. TomVols

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    Sheesh Daniel. Good thing your new member name isn't long :D
     
  10. MarciontheModerateBaptist

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  11. Pioneer

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    If a church has thousands of members (like NT churches did) then I could see having more than one pastor. But most Baptist churches today have less than 150 people, so one pastor is adequate. ;)

    [ February 07, 2002: Message edited by: Pioneer ]
     
  12. TJAcorn

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    You guys are so right!

    Eldership is much more biblical and causes fewer problems.

    Here's a link to a good article and book on the subject.

    Biblical Eldership

    Trevor
     
  13. Aaron

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    Churches are indeed led by the elders, by example and through the preaching of the Word. But be careful, elders are NOT to be lords over God's flock, but examples.

    Sounds as if the Baptists in general are going the way of Rome.
     
  14. Siegfried

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    Where on this thread do you get that idea?
     
  15. Aaron

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by dan53:
    This church has had a history of the traditional congregational government and is voting this Sunday to goto the Elder-Led model. :D :D<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    That's where.
     
  16. TJAcorn

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Aaron:
    But be careful, elders are NOT to be lords over God's flock, but examples.
    <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    What! Why?

    Scripture?

    Not much substance in that argument there bud.

    Trevor
     
  17. Aaron

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    1 Peter 5
    2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
    3 Neither as being lords over God's heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.
    4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.
     
  18. dan53

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    The very reason the church is going to the
    elder-led model is because the previous leadership ( a typical Baptist family) ran the pastor and the church. The church body decided they wanted more of a check and balance approach and most of all and more scriptural model then they have had in the past. those who say that this is to "lord it over them" may have those issues to deal with in their own sphere of influence. [​IMG] :cool: :cool:
     
  19. TomVols

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    I think we need to make a distinction here. Elders are to be the spiritual leaders. The church is still to be congregationally governed. To be governed by elders makes a church more of the presbyterian type and not baptist.
     
  20. Pastor Larry

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    <BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by TomVols:
    I think we need to make a distinction here. Elders are to be the spiritual leaders. The church is still to be congregationally governed. To be governed by elders makes a church more of the presbyterian type and not baptist.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


    Good point Tom. Many, as mentioned above, shy away from the biblical model because of abuses. There is no reason to leave a biblical model to go to an elder run church.

    I think we also need to do away with the trend that requires multiple or plurality of elders. While I have no problem with a plurality of elders for churches who need them, there is no biblical command to have more than one. Even in cases with a plurality, there is, of necessity, a single head. I have a hard time with a Baptist church that is run by a plurality of elders. That sounds very Presbyterian to me and is not the biblical form of government.

    I also think we need to define elders biblically. Many times, it seems the elders are a board that makes decisions for the church. Biblically speaking, the elder is a pastor and overseer, whose responsibility is to lead, shepherd, and teach the flock. There are far too many churches, IMHO, who have elected men out of the congregation to be elders who they never intended to be a true elder--a pastor.
     

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