I wrote this concerning today's structure of the church.. please give me your thoughts.. Today’s church makes the proclamation of being led, guided and structured by the Bible, yet when we look at the internal structure of the church we will discover it’s not Biblically built at all. First we must look at the administration structure of the church in the form of offices found in scripture. They are: Elder- presbuteros: An older male. An overseer especially known in the Jewish religion. Bishop- episkopos: An older male. An overseer especially known in the early Christian religion. Deacon- diakonos: A servant of the church Pastor- poimen: Shepherd Office Overview Please note that the word “Elder” and “Bishop” are two separate words, yet when Paul discusses these appointments he interchanges the words. I believe this was done according to the audience in which his letters would be given. Converted Jews would understand the term “Elder” while the Gentiles would understand the term “Bishop”. Two separate terms meaning basically the same thing. Qualifications for Elder/Bishop can be found in 1Timothy Chapter 3 and Titus Chapter 1. The qualifications from these two Epistles are almost parallel in description. The term Pastor translates to the Greek word Poimen which basically means Shepherd. This word (In the KJV) is only found twice. Once in the Old Testament (Jeremiah 17:16) and once in the New Testament (Ephesians 4:11) It is believed that the appointment of Deacons came about in Acts Chapter 6. Qualifications of Deacon can be found in 1Timothy Chapter 3. Please not that the office of Deacon also has requirements for the wives of the men in this office (1Timothy Chapter 3:11) Church In most modern churches of today we see the administrational structured as: Pastor (Shepherd)- Responsible for teaching and preaching the Word of God. Visitation. Councilor of the congregation in all areas. Responsible for the growth or decline in church attendance. Pretty much every function of the church is laid upon the position of Pastor. Elders/Bishops- Nonexistent Deacons- Oversee Administrational duties of the church. Makes most major decisions of the church such as purchases, structure, and disciplinary actions. As you can see clearly this structure is incorrect. We have placed all responsibility on the Pastor and have given the servants full authority. The Biblical structure Elder/Bishop- Overseer of the church. Attends to all administration duties within the church and governs the functioning of the church. Pastor- An Elder/Bishop pulled from the group with the gift of Preaching and Teaching the word of God to the congregation. (As a Shepherd oversees his flock). If a person is truly doing this in Biblical fashion he does NOT have time for anything else. Deacons and their wives- Servants of the church. The hands on people whether it is physical, spiritual, or dealing with any other need. The Deacons and their wives are the first line of the structure of the church that the congregation come to if in need. More structure flaws within today’s church. In most churches today, decisions are made by the deacons and then relayed onto the congregation and put to a “membership vote”. The problem with this structure is the Elder/Bishops are the “officers” of the church are should be connected with God in the direction in which He desires the church to go. It is sad to say that within the “membership” of the church are many unsaved people. These people have not come to a saving knowledge of Christ and can surely not feel the guiding of the Holy Spirit in the direction of the church. Yet they are allowed to cast a vote. A proper structure of the church is the Bishop/Elders stand before God in prayer and seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit and then reply this direction or decision onto the congregation. There is NO vote. If a member does not agree with that decision, they may leave that body. God is not the author of confusion (1Corinthias 14:33) and would not have a conflict in decisions. No where is scripture will you find a church membership taking a “vote” pertaining to the direction of the church. God will speak to the Elder/Bishops which in turn relay the decision to the congregation and is supported by the Deacons and their wives. I believe it is virtually impossible for a church to stand under the authority of the Bible yet structure the church in an unbiblical manner. The solution is simple; restructure the church according to scripture. The problem will be resistance; tradition, and it will take a long time.