This post contains my (Wayne) answers to a friend who raised some questions about church leadership. His questions are in lower case and my answers are in capital letters only for the purpose of distinguishing questions from answers.  (In other words, I realize the capitals can be a bit much but for the sake of clarity bear with me…)

I HAVE LOOKED AT YOUR QUESTIONS AND FRANKLY DON‘T SEE ANY CONFLICT BETWEEN ELDER “RULE” (TIMOTHY 5:17) AND “HAVE CHARGE OVER YOU” (I THESSALONIANS 5:12,13) AND THE  ISSUES YOU RAISED UNLESS SOMEONE MISTAKES ELDER RULE FOR ELDER STUPIDITY OR ELDER DICTATORSHIP. 

BRIEFLY:  1. How do the principles of Elder Rule interact with the Doctrine of the Priesthood of the Believer? What are the full functions of the New Testament priest? Believers have both a wonderful privilege and a great responsibility.  

I DON‘T SEE HOW ELDER SUPERVISION OR OVERSIGHT AFFECTS THE CLEARLY TAUGHT DOCTRINE OF THE PRIESTHOOD OF ALL BELIEVERS AT ALL. HOW WOULD IT AND WHY WOULD IT? I WILL WRITE MORE ABOUT THIS IN LATER ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS.

2. When Jesus says ‘… tell it to the church” in Mtt 18:17, is he asserting that the Church is the “court of final appeal” on this Earth? It is of particular note that Jesus does not say “tell it to the Elders,” or some church committee. Particularly in light of passages like 1 Cor. 6; if the church has been vested with the responsibility to judge angels, the world and each other – surely, a congregation who is properly informed and truly spiritual, should participate in the selection of their leaders in a determinative sense.  

IT DOESN’T SAY TELL IT TO THE CHURCH FOR A VOTE – THE DECISION HAS ALREADY BEEN MADE THAT THE BROTHER IS IN SIN AND THE CHURCH IS ENLISTED TO PRAY AND PLEAD AND EXHORT (in keeping with 2 Thessalonians 3:14, 15).

IT DOESN’T SAY TELL IT TO THE CHURCH AND IF HE REFUSES THEN TAKE A VOTE AS TO WHETHER OR NOT HE SHOULD BE  PUT OUT OF THE CHURCH. THE ISSUE IS WHO IS TAKING THE LEAD – WHO SHOULD KNOW MORE ABOUT SCRIPTURE – WHO SHOULD BE MOST MATURE IN SPIRITUAL MATTERS – WHO IS LEADING THE CHURCH TO MAKE ALL THIS KNOWN TO THE CHURCH – AFTER MATTHEW 18:15 AND 16 ARE FOLLOWED WHAT HAS OCCURRED IS COMMUNICATED TO  THE ELDERS AS REPRESENTATIVES OF THE CHURCH AND THEY THEN PASS IT ON TO THE CONGREGATION WITH THE EXHORTATION TO THE CONGREGATION TO ADMONISH, PRAY FOR, EXHORT THE ERRING, UNREPENTANT, UNRECONCILED BROTHER. THIS TELLING IT TO THE CHURCH IS OBVIOUSLY A FORMAL KIND OF TELLING.

IT CERTAINLY ISN’T REFERRING TO INDIVIDUALS GOING  AROUND AND INDISCRIMINATELY TELLING IT TO VARIOUS MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH. TO DO THIS WOULD BE GOSSIP WHICH THE BIBLE STRONGLY CONDEMNS. ITS OBVIOUS IN REFERENCE TO THIS TELLING IT TO THE CHURCH THAT  SOMEONE HAS TO MAKE THE DECISION WHETHER WHAT THE ERRING PERSON HAS DONE WARRANTS A PUBLIC DISCLOSURE TO THE CONGREGATION AND A PUBLIC APPEAL TO THE CHURCH TO PRAY, PERSUADE, ADMONISH, EXHORT, REBUKE, ETC. THE ERRING PERSON. SOMEONE HAS TO DECIDE ABOUT WHETHER THE TELLING SHOULD GO PUBLIC AND THEN WHAT AND HOW THE CONGREGATION SHOULD PROCEED. TO INDICSRIMINATELY TELL IT TO THE CHURCH WITHOUT ELDERSSHIP LEADERSHIP  AND SUPERVISION AND INSTRUCTION WOULD MERELY FEED THE GOSSIP MILL. THIS WOULD SERVE NOT CONSTRUCTIVE PURPOSE AND WOULD CLEARLY VIOLATE SCRIPTURE. 3. When Jesus says in Matthew 18:18 “I tell you the truth, whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever you release on earth will have been released in heaven;” what is He saying and what is He not saying?

I’M NOT SURE WHAT THIS HAS TO DO WITH THE ISSUE UNDER DISCUSSION IN THAT IT CERTAINLY DOESN’T MEAN (CAN’T MEAN) THAT EVERY PERSON IN THE CHURCH MUST BE IN TOTAL AGREEMENT BEFORE ANY ACTION MUST BE TAKEN.

THE QUESTION IS, DOES THE YOU IN THIS TEXT MEAN EVERY SINGLE PERSON OR DOES THE YOU MEAN THAT THE MATTHEW 18:15 – 17 PROCEDURE HAS BEEN FOLLOWED AND THERE STILL HAS BEEN NO REPENTANCE ON THE PART OF THE ERRING PERSON.  IF THAT HAS BEEN DONE, THEN THE ERRING BROTHER WHO IS FUNCTIONING AS AN UNBELIEVER (I.E., HE IS UNWILLING TO LISTEN TO CHRIST ASD HE SPEAKS IN HIS WORD – HE IS UNWILLING TO DO WHAT CHRIST SAYS HE SHOULD DO, NAMELY REPENT AND BE RECONCILED –  JOHN 10:28; MATTHEW 18:15 – 17) IS TO BE DISFELLOWSHIPPED FROM THE CHURCH WHICH ACCORDING TO PAUL IS THE SAME AS BEING TURNED OVER TO THE DEVIL (I TIMOTHY 1;20). TO BE PUT OUT OF THE CHURCH IS TO BE TURNED OVER TO SATAN. THE CHURCH IS WHERE CHRIST REIGNS. THE WORLD IS SATAN’S TERRITORY. ALL THIS TEXT MEANS IS THAT IF THE CHURCH FOLLOWS CHRIST’S ORDERS IN MATTHEW 18:15 – 17 IN REFERENCE TO AN ERRING, DISOBEDIENT PERSON ANDS DISFELLOWSHIPS THAT PERSON, THEY DO SO UNDER THE AUTHORITY AND WITH THE APPROVAL OF CHRIST. THE TEXT SAYS NOTHING ABOUT THE NECESSITY OF VOTING. NO VOTE IS NECESSARY IF THE PROCEDURE DESCRIBED IN MATTHEW 18:15 -17 HAS BEEN FOLLOWED. IT’S A DONE DEAL BECAUSE HE WON’T OBEY CHRIST. WHY WOULD ANYONE THINK YOU’D HAVE TO TAKE A VOTE WHEN CHRIST HAS ALREADY LAID OUT THE PROCEDURE AND THE PERSON WAS UNWILLING TO OBEY?

3 AND 4. What are the limits of Apostolic Authority with respect to the normative role of Elders today? “The church as a whole perpetuates the apostolic ministry though no individual has apostolic authority”. (Rodney Decker; Polity and the Elder Issue, Grace Theo. Journal, fall 1988) Elders are to train men for the work of the ministry… they are not the ministry.

What is the Role of the Holy Spirit in the Congregation as a corporate body? 1 John 4:1 says, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to determine if they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” How is a congregation to test the spirit and make their collective mind known? How do elders prevent people from ‘voting’ with their tithe or with their feet? What long term effect does that have on the maturity of a church?

AGAIN I DON‘T UNDERSTAND THE PROBLEM. OBVIOUSLY THESE STATEMENTS ABOUT EQUIPPING THE CHURCH FOR MINISTRY ARE TRUE – I BELIEVE IT WHOLEHEARTEDLY. EVERY BELIEVER IS RESPONSIBLE TO DO THIS AND TO DO IT OUT OF LOVE FOR CHRIST NOT BECAUSE HE IS ABLE TO VOTE ON WHAT SHOULD HAPPEN.

CONCERNING THE LAST TWO QUESTIONS, UNLESS PEOPLE ARE MOTIVATED BY SELFISHNESS AND A DESIRE TO RUN THE SHOW RATHER THAN A REGARD FOR GOD’S GLORY AND A DESIRE TO SERVE AND GIVE OUT OF LOVE FOR CHRIST WHAT DOES VOTING HAVE TO DO WITH GIVING OR SERVING? I DON‘T THINK  ELDER RULE CAN AND DOES HAVE A NEGATIVE EFFECT ON THE CHURCH OR THE INDIVIDUAL BELIEVER WHEN IT IS UNDERSTOOD AND UTILIZED PROPERLY. THE ONLY EFFECT IT  WILL HAVE WILL BE  A GOOD EFFECT BECAUSE PEOPLE WILL BE SERVING AND GIVING FOR THE RIGHT REASON – BECAUSE THEY LOVE CHRIST.  RIGHT NOW, FOR EXAMPLE, I AM NOT AN ELDER IN ANY CHURCH AND I CAN PROMISE YOU THAT IT HAS NOT AFFECTED MY GIVING OR MY SERVICE OR MY MATURITY. IN FACT, IT PROBABLY HAS HELPED MY MATURITY AND MINISTRY – NO ONE CAN SAY OR THINK THAT I’M DEVOTED, ZEALOUS, PRAYERFUL, ALWAYS ABOUNDING IN THE WORK OF THE LORD, SACRIFICIAL  BECAUSE I AM AN ELDER. 

AND, BY THE WAY, SOME OF THE MOST MATURE AND ZEALOUS AND SACRIFICIAL AND EFFECTIVE CHRISTIANS I KNOW ARE MEMBERS OF CHURCHES WHERE ELDER RULE IS PROPERLY PRACTICED. PRESENTLY WE ARE IN LITTLE ROCK, AR AND ARE ATTENDING AND TEACHING IN A CHURCH THAT PRACTICES ELDER RULE. THIS IS A CHURCH FILLED WITH HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE WHO ARE SOME OF THE MOST KNOWLEDGABLE, LOVING, DEVOTED AND EAGER CHRISTIANS I HAVE EVER MET. MANY OF THESE PEOPLE ARE LEADERS IN THEIR OCCUPATIONALS ENDEAVORS AND EVEN THOUGH THEY ARE NOT ELDERS, THEY ARE READERS, THINKERS, GIVERS AND ZEALOUSLY SERVING CHRIST. THE SAME WAS TRUE OF

GRACE COMMUNITY CHURCH IN CALIFORNIA WHERE WE WERE MEMBERS DURING THE TIME I TAUGHT AT THE MASTER’S COLLEGE AND SEMINARY. AMONG THE MEMBERS OF THIS CHURCH OF SEVERAL THOUSAND WHICH WAS ELDER RULED (SERVED) WERE SOME OF THE MOST VIBRANT, MATURE, ACTIVE, SACRIFICIAL, COURAGEOUS, GIFTED, ZEALOUS, JOYOUS, THEOLOGICALLY SOUND, CARING, COMPASSIONATE, EAGER TO SERVE, CHRIST LOVING CHRISTIANS I HAVE EVER MET.  

IN REFERENCE TO THE IDEA THAT SERVANT ELDERSHIP RULE KILLS MOTIVATION, I SAY AS I’VE HEARD OTHERS SAY ABOUT OTHER STATEMENTS THAT HAVE NO SUBSTANCE OR VALIDITY TO THEM, “THAT DOG WON‘T HUNT”. IN PRACTICE, IT DOESN’T WORK OUT THAT WAY UNLESS THE ELDERS ARE MISUSING THEIR AUTHORITY OR THE PEOPLE ARE SPIRITUALLY IMMATURE AND MOTIVATED TO SERVE FOR THE WRONG REASONS. THERE ARE MANY CHURCHES THROUGHOUT THE USA THAT PRACTICE SERVANT ELDERSHIP RULE AND YET THE PEOPLE ARE FUNCTIONING WELL IN TERMS OF THE PRIESTHOOD OF ALL BELIEVERS.  SERVANT ELDERSHIP RULE HAS NOT BEEN AND WILL NOT BE AN INHIBITING FACTOR WHEN RIGHTLY PRACTICED.   AT THE SAME TIME, I DO WANT TO SAY THAT I KNOW (AND SO DO YOU) OF  MANY CHURCHES WHERE CONGREGATIONAL RULE IS PRACTICED AND YET THE GIVING IS LAGGING AND THE PEOPLE ARE WOEFULLY LAX IN KNOWLEDGE AND ALSO IN SERVICE. THE IDEA THAT PRACTICING CONGREGATIONAL RULE WILL INSPIRE AND MOTIVATE PEOPLE TO GIVE IS OFTEN CONTRADICTED BY WHAT IS HAPPENING IN MANY CHURCHES WHERE THAT IS THE MODUS OPERANDI.   MANY PEOPLE REACT AGAINST THIS TEACHING I’VE BEEN EXPLAINING BECAUSE THEY HAVE A WRONG UNDERSTANDING OF HOW IT PLAYS OUT IN THE REAL LIFE OF THE CHURCH. ELDERSHIP RULE DOESN’T MEAN THE PEOPLE DON‘T HAVE A VOICE – IT DOESN’T MEAN THAT THE ELDERS DON‘T SEEK COUNSEL OF THE CONGREGATION  – IT DOESN’T MEAN THAT THE ELDERS DON‘T RESPECT AND VALUE THE PEOPLE AND THEIR PERSPECTIVES – IT SIMPLY MEANS THAT THEY ARE LOVING SERVANTS WHO CARE FOR THE SHEEP AND ENCOURAGE THE SHEEP AND WANT TO BE OBEDIENT TO CHRIST WHO SAYS THEY ARE TO MANAGERS, BE OVERSEERS, HAVE CHARGE AND LEAD. THEY LEAD AS SERVANTS WITH A HUMBLE ATTITUDE AND WILLINGNESS TO SACRIFICE. THEY AVOID BEING PUSHY OR DOMINEERING OR AUTHORITARIAN. SERVANT LEADERSHI[P (ELDERSHIP) HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE ELDER BEING MORE IMPORTANT OR SUPERIOR; IT HAS EVERYTHING TO DO WITH FUNCTION AND THE  WAY ELDERS SHOULD FUNCTION.AS A HUSBAND I AM RESPONSIBLE FOR WHAT HAPPENS IN MY HOME, BUT I DON‘T MAKE DECISIONS UNILATERALLY; I WORK, BUT I DON‘T DO ALL THE WORK.  MY WIFE IS MORE GIFTED THAN I IN MANY AREAS AND SO WISDOM AND LOVE MEANS I DELEGATE AND ENCOURAGE AND LISTEN AND ON MANY OCCASIONS UNLESS IT WOULD VIOLATE GOD’S REVEALED WILL I DO WHAT SHE WANTS RATHER THAN WHAT I WANT. THAT’S BIBLICCAL LEADERSHIP WHETHER IT BE IN THE HOME OR IN THE CHURCH. AN ELDER WILL DO THE SAME IN REFERENCE TO THE CHURCH. AND NOW FOR A COUPLE OF OTHER THINGS: AGAIN PLEASE CHECK THE OTHER THINGS I HAVE WRITTEN ON LEADERSHIP ON OUR BLOG SITE. I APPRECIATE YOUR CONCERN AND IN PART AGREE WITH YOU, BUT AFTER 45 YEARS OF READING AND RESEARCH AND EXPERIENCE IN PLANTING CHURCHES, PASTORING CHURCHES, WRITING BOOKS AND ARTICLES ABOUT THE CHURCH AND TEACHING HUNDREDS OF PASTORS ABOUT CHURCH RELATED ISSUES, I BELIEVE THE MEN YOU QUOTE ARE MAKING SOME ASSUMPTIONS AND MAKING SOME STATEMENTS THAT ARE NOT BIBLICALLY WARRANTED. I HAVE PROBABLY READ AND HEARD EVERY ARGUMENT ABOUT THE WAY CHURCHES SHOULD BE RUN THAT IS OUT THERE. FOR YEARS,  I PASTORED CHURCHES THAT WERE CONGREGATIONAL IN THE WAY THEY WERE RUN. FRANKLY, FOR BIBLICAL REASONS AND FOR PRACTICAL REASONS I NEVER WANT TO GO BACK TO THAT. I HAVE SEEN AND EXPERIENCED THE DAMAGE THAT THAT KIND OF SET UP PRODUCES. OUR CHURCHES IN AMERICA ARE OFTEN IN A MESS; THEY ARE IN DISARRAY WITH A VERSION OF THE SITUATION IN JUDGES BEING PRODUCED ALL OVER AGAIN – EVERY MAN (AND WOMAN) DOING WHAT IS RIGHT IN HIS OWN EYES IN THE CHURCH. THERE IS A CRISIS OF LEADERSHIP IN THE HOME AND IN THE CHURCH.   I THINK SOME OF THE STATEMENTS THAT ARE MADE IN YOUR QUOTES SUCH AS THAT PAUL AND OTHERS LIKE TIMOTHY WERE NOT ELDERS ARE UNWARRANTED. IN FACT, PETER WHO WAS AN APOSTLE SAYS HE WAS AN ELDER IN I PETER 5:1 AND PAUL HOLDS HIMSELF UP AS AN EXAMPLE TO ELDERS FROM EPHESUS IN ACTS 20.  ACTS 1 IS SOMETHINES QUOTED AS AN EXAMPLE OF HOW DECISIONS WERE MADE CONGREGATIONALLY. IT’S IMPORTANT IN THIS PASSAGE TO NOTICE WHO WAS DOING THE LEADING IN VERSES 2, 3 AND 13. IT’S TRUE IN THE PASSAGE THAT LATER THERE WERE OTHERS WHO ,JOINED THEM ACCORDING TO VERSE 15. BUT THEY CERTAINLY DIDN’T VOTE . THE PASSAGES SAYS THAT THEY ALL PRAYED WHICH IS A GOOD THING AND SHOULD BE DONE BY  THE WHOLE CHURCH WHEN OFFICERS ARE BEING SELECTED, BUT VERSE 26 INDICATES THAT THE MAN THAT WAS CHOSEN WAS NOT CHOSEN BY A VOTE, BUT BY CASTING LOTS.

SIMILARLY, ACTS 13 CANNOT BE USED AS AN EXAMPLE OF CONGREGATIONAL RULE BECAUSE AGAIN IN THIS INSTANCE IT WAS NOT THE CONGREGATION THAT DECIDED WHO WOULD BE SET APART – THAT WAS DONE BY DIRECT REVELATION. AND THAT ISN’T HAPPENING ANYMORE. WE HAVE A COMPLETED SCRIPTURE. GOD HAS SAID ALL HE IS GOING TO SAY AND ALL THAT NEEDS TO BE SAID. AT THAT POINT IN CHURCH HISTORY, ALL THEY HAD WAS THE OLD TESTAMENT. SO GOD REVEALED HIMSELF AND HISWILL IN WAYS OTHER THAN WRITTEN SCRIPTURE. NOT SO ANY MORE. NOT NEEDED ANY MORE SINCE WE HAVE THE COMPLETED CANON. IN ACTS 13 THESE MEN WERE NOT SELECTED BY CONGREGATIONAL VOTE.  

AND FURTHER – PEOPLE CAN DO ALL THE GYMNASTICS THEY WANT  WITH WORDS IN TERMS OF TITUS 1:5 AND ACTS 14:23, BUT IT IS CLEAR FROM I TIMOTHY 5:17 THAT RULING WITH A SERVANT SPIRIT IS MORE THAN LABORING IN WORD AND DOCTRINE. YES, ELDERS RULE IN PART BY MEANS OF PREACHING AND TEACHING GOD’S WORD. CERTAINLY THAT’S AN IMPORTANT PART OF RULING, BUT THAT’S NOT ALL OF WHAT PAUL MEANT. THE WORD “ESPECIALLY” MAKES A DISTINCTION INDICATING THAT THE RULING AND LABORING IN WORD AND DOCTRINE ARE NOT IDENTICAL IN EVERY RESPECT.   ALSO, IN REFERENCE TO THIS DISCUSSION, I DON‘T HEAR OR READ ANYONE ADDRESSING THE SPECIFICS OF THE “HAVE CHARGE OVER YOU” ISSUE OF I THESSALONIANS 5:12, 13. ALSO I HAVE NOT HEARD THE SPECIFICS OF THE “OBEY” AND “SUBMIT” COMMANDS OF HEBREWS 13:17 EXPLAINED. WHAT DO THESE WORDS MEAN? DO THEY MEAN SOMETHING OR NOTHING? PEOPLE CAN FOOL AROUND WITH SOME OF THE OTHER WORDS IF THEY WANT AS THEY OVERLOOK THE IMMEDIATE AND LARGER CONTEXT OF SCRIPTURE ON THE LEADERSHIP ISSUE. THE MEANING OF WORDS MUST NOT ONLY BE DETERMINED BY LOOKING AT A GREEK OR HEBREW DICTIONARY (LEXICON), BUT ALSO BY LOOKING AT THE IMMEDIATE AND LARGER CONTEXT OF SCRIPTURE – BY COMPARING SCRIPTURE WITH SCRIPTURE. PEOPLE MAY SAY  THAT CERTAIN WORDS MEAN SOMETHING OTHER THAN WHAT THE WORDS APPOINT, ORDAIN AND SET IN ORDER USUALLY MEAN. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE WORDS “OBEY” AND “SUBMIT” AND “RULE” AND “HAVE CHARGE” AND “APPRECIATE” AND “”ESTEEM AND THAT THEY MAY DO THEIR WORK WITH JOY AND NOT WITH GRIEF” WHICH ARE FOUND IN I THESSALONIANS 5:12,13; HEBREWS 13:17; ACTS 14:23 AND I TIMOTHY 5:17?  ANY WAY, THERE YOU HAVE SOME OF MY THOUGHTS – MY UNDERSTANDING OF SCRIPTURE ON CHURCH LEADERSHIP. OTHERS MAY DISAGREE – SOME BECAUSE THEY THINK OF ELDER RULE AS DICTATORSHIP; BECAUSE THEY MISUNDERSTAND THE WAY ELDER RULE SHOULD FUNCTION EVEN AS MANY MISUNDERSTAND THE WAY THE LEADERSHIP OF THE HUSBAND SHOULD FUNCTION IN THE HOME. IN ANY CHURCH THAT PRACTICED SERVANT ELDERSHIP RULE WHERE I SERVED WE ALWAYS INVOLVED PEOPLE.  WE NEVER ACTED UNILATERALLY. SOME PEOPLE ARE SCARED OF WHAT MAY HAPPEN; THEY ARE IMAGINING THINGS THAT NEVER HAVE OR HOPEFULLY NEVER WILL HAPPEN WHEN GODLY ELDERS WHO ARE MORE CONCERNED ABOUT GOD’S GLORY AND THE GOOD OF GOD’S PEOPLE  THAN THEY ARE ABOUT HAVING THEIR OWN WAY AND THROWING THEIR WEIGHT AROUND. WHERE SERVANT ELDER RULE IS PRACTICED BIBLICALLY, PEOPLE WILL BE CONSULTED; PEOPLE WILL BE LISTENED TO; IDEAS AND PERSPECTIVES OF PEOPLE WILL BE SOUGHT AFTER AND FACTORED IN.  IT WOULD BE UNBIBLICAL NOT TO DO THIS AS WELL AS FOOLISH AND DISASTROUS. THE AFFIRMATION OF THE PEOPLE IS ESSENTIAL AND IT OUGHT TO BE SOUGHT. 

WILL EVERY FINAL DECISION OR CONCLUSION THE ELDERS COME TO BE ACCEPTED AND APPROVED BY EVERYONE? PROBABLY NOT. BUT THAT SHOULDN’T SURPRISE US OR ALARM US BECAUSE EVEN IN CONGREGATIONAL RULE CHURCHES YOU HAVE PEOPLE WHO DISAGREE WITH THE VOTE OF THE MAJORITY. WHERE SERVANT LEADERSHIP (ELDER RULE) IS PROPERLY PRACTICED,  THE CONSENSUS OF PRAYING, HUMBLE, SERIOUS PEOPLE WILL BE TAKEN SERIOUSLY. AND IF THE CONSENSUS OF THE GODLY, PRAYING, DEVOTED, CHRIST LOVING AND HONORING PEOPLE SEES IT ONE WAY THEN THE LEADERSHIP OF THE CHURCH WHERE SERVANT ELDERSHIP LEADERSHIP IS APPROPRIATELY PRACTICED WILL MAKE THE PERSPECTIVES OF THE CONGREGATION A LARGE FACTOR IN WHAT THE CHURCH DOES AND HOW IT FUNCTIONS IN MATTERS THAT ARE NOT CLEARLY LAID OUT IN GOD’S WORD. IN FACT, APART FROM BIBLICAL QUALIFICATIONS AND PRINCIPLE, A MOST IMPORTANT PART OF MAKING A DECISION FOR GODLY, BIBLICAL ELDERS WILL BE THE CONSENSUS OF THE PRAYING, GODLY, HUMBLE, DEVOTED, CONGREGATION. 

THE CONGREGATION WILL HAVE A VOTE EVEN IF THEY DON‘T HAVE A FORMAL, RAISE YOUR HAND, CAST A BALLOT, SAY “AYE” KIND OF PROCEDURE. PEOPLE NEED NEVER FEAR: WITH GODLY ELDERS  THE PRAYERFUL PERSPECTIVES OF THE CONGREGATION ARE IMPORTANT AND WILL BE TAKEN INTO CONSIDERATION.

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