Is a church board a biblical concept?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Onlybygrace, Jan 6, 2010.

  1. Onlybygrace

    Onlybygrace
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    Throughout my history as a Baptist (about 35 years) all the churches I have been involved in have been led by a board of deacons sometimes called the diaconate or the church board or the church executive.
    It has been my experience that in most cases the men on the board either do not meet biblical qualifications for deacons or they are not performing the Bblical role of deacons. One church had it constitutionalised that "the church executive was the decision-making bod of the church."

    Some questions:
    1. Is this right?
    2. If not, what is right?
    3. How do you deal with a situation that is not right?
     
  2. Tom Bryant

    Tom Bryant
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    No, it is not right. The Deacons had specific criteria and were established as servants of the church (not the pastor) in 1 Timothy 3 and Acts 6.

    I would begin not by trying to 'throw the bums out' but begin studying with them what the Bible says about Deacons and indeed all members of the church. Start giving them tasks within the church to become servants.

    Then preach and teach about the nature of the church. Let the church see what the Bible says about what the church ought to be doing.

    Often the problem with a deacon board is that the same people stay on for years and years. Begin to establish a rotation system so that new people who understand the Biblical teaching begin to get on board.

    I have been here 12 years. I am now :thumbsup: blessed with a great group of deacons who serve. Then because they are servants they are leaders not by fiat or decree but because they go in a Biblical direction and people follow them.

    just some thots.... I'll be looking forward to a good discussion.
     
  3. Johnv

    Johnv
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    A church board is neither biblically mandated nor biblically condemned. It typically is, however, appropriate from a practical standpoint. The presence or absence of a church board is not a litmus test for whether a church is biblical or not.
     
  4. Jim1999

    Jim1999
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    Not every little detail in scripture was intended for modernity. We don't wear gowns and sandals. It is important to sort out cultural differences when applying scripture to to-day.

    The traditional pastor and deacons board, with the whole membership holding the final vote worked for many years. Why change what works?

    Cheers,

    Jim
     
  5. preachinjesus

    preachinjesus
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    Church boards and indoor plumbing have about the same biblical standard for existence. Neither is mentioned, but both exist to facilitate healthy operations.
     
  6. canadyjd

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    IMHO, many of the problems we face in our churches is because we have given to deacons (servants of the church) the authority reserved for elders (the pastor being first among equals).

    Our church recently moved to correct that issue and now has, IMHO, a more biblical model of an elder-led congregation.

    peace to you:praying:
     
  7. saturneptune

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    I really like that post. In the past, too many deacons thought they were elders. Anyway, that is one of the best posts I have seen describing what a deacon should be.
     
  8. Jerome

    Jerome
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    Also Romans 16:thumbs:
     
  9. fbcodr

    fbcodr
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    In a pure democracy there need not be a board. The boards I last read in the Bible was the ones Paul floated ashore on after being shipwrecked. I don't like the term in Church life. Sounds to much like a corporation for me. Delegated Church authority is a dangerous concept for me.:thumbsup::1_grouphug:
     
  10. Tom Butler

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    It can be dangerous, but it doesn't have to be. The first deacons had delegated responsibility from the apostles and the congregation. Anytime you delegate responsibility, you must also delegate the appropriate authority to get the job done, whether it's the deacons or the Finance Committee.

    I suspect most churches are similar to ours. They have committees charged with certain responsibilities, and grant them limited authority, reserving final authority for the congregation. Our trustees serve as our Building and Grounds Committee. They have the authority to get repairs done and spend the necessary money without coming to the church for permission. But that authority is not open-ended.

    Because deacons are considered the wisest and most spiritual men in the church, they have significant influence on church life.

    The problems with deacon "boards" arise when the deacons overstep their bounds and see themselves as bosses instead of servants.

    Neither the congregation nor the deacons themselves should define the deacons' role as "running the church."
     
  11. abcgrad94

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    Best post on this topic I've seen.:thumbsup:
     
  12. Tom Bryant

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    Thanks, I guess it just proves the cliche that even a broken clock is right twice a day!
     
  13. David Michael Harris

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    I always thought the church board was a sign outside the building that said, 'Carpenter need apprentices, apply within'.
     
  14. fbcodr

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    I LIKE IT!!!:laugh::jesus:
     

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