Today we pick back up with our series going through the book of 1 Timothy. We are looking at verses 1-7. Now, you may recall our last message in this series was looking at what was really a reminder of something that God set up in creation, that there is sorting intentional in the differences between men and women. There is a God designed order to the family and to the Church that is meant to reflect back to God and His nature. If you missed that message, please go back and listen to it. One clarification I wanted to make to what I said there is that the passages we are looking at are addressing the roles of men and women primarily in the home and in the church. The scriptures are not addressing the business-place, or politics, etc. So please hear me that what I say here is only addressing the home, and the Church.
Have you ever wondered what the Bible has to say about what a leader in the church should be like? What are some characteristics of a leader?
Lets read the the text and then get into a very simple understanding of what should be looked for when a Church is looking for leaders.
So, here is the long and the short of this text. Leadership in the church is about character, and competency.
The first thing I want to look at is what leadership in the church is. We are going to look at this word “overseer”. Now, the NKJV which is the pew Bible says Bishop, The Holman, ESV and NIV translation say “overseer”, The Greek word in this is “episkope” and in verse two the term “episkapos” which is a similar word. Both of these words are used to indicate oversight, and presiding over the affairs of the church. Now the “office” that is being described here is described in the new testament using the terms bishop, elder and presbyters (pastors) interchangeably. They are all words that describe an aspect of the office, but they are all referencing the same office. Overseers, elders, pastors are all the same role, described with different words. They are the ones who are given the task of leading the flock of God. They are the senior leaders of the local church. They are the ones who are called by God to both care for, protect, and teach the body. In many churches, the office of pastor, and the office of elder have been separated. Many times for good reason. For practical purposes, Churches have had one pastor, but they have, as we do, a board of people who are the decision makers for the body. Now, this is a wise thing because there should never be one person in charge of all the affairs of the church. in fax, in Scripture, there are always a plurality of leaders on the church, you never have one elder. Now the challenge of separating out the office of pastor and elder is that the people who make the decisions in scripture are also the ones who are supposed to be caring for the spiritual needs of the body. And the ones who are teaching the Word of God, should also feel the weight of making the decisions for the body. The decision making role should not be separated from the caring role.
Now, I want you to know that I am not preaching this text to speak ill against our system of church government, or of anyone who was a part of instituting it. Nor am I proposing at this moment that we must change it today. I am nearly preaching the text that is here in Timothy…
Now, I have heard a number of messages on this text, and I could go on for a long time on this topic of leadership, but what I want to do in this message is give some simple handholds for all of us when it comes to leadership in the church. Those are: leadership is a high calling, leadership begins in the heart and the home, leadership is sacrifice.
Eldership is a high calling: it says here that if one desires it, they desire a noble task.
leaders should desire to lead: 1 Peter:5:1-4
leaders should feel the weight of their responsibility: Hebrews 13:17, James 3:1
A leader must be gifted to lead: teaching is the distinguishing characteristic of an elder in leadership. The primary
Eldership begins in the heart and the home: v. 2-7
a leader’s priorities must be in order: Christian, Husband, Father, Pastor.
Husband of one wife:
manage his household well:
not a recent convert:
Eldership is sacrifice: 1 Peter 5:2-4: pastor… The shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. John 12:1-20