Elders? Yes Or No?
“So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ as well as a partaker in the glory that is to be revealed. Tend the flock of God that is your charge, not by constraint but willingly, not for shameful gain but eagerly, not as domineering over those in your charge but being examples to the flock.” 1 Peter 5: 1-3 Nestle-Aland Greek New Testament
Yes, there are such people as true elders within the Body of Christ. However, please notice that they are AMONG us and NOT over us. In my over 40 years of serving the Body of Christ I have noticed that true elders do not accept titles or pay for their service. No, they serve gladly and give of themselves continually without compensation or reward. These mature folk help us find safe pasture where we are able to grow and learn directly from The Master. They help make sure we are safe in all matters of faith and practice.
The Lord never meant for these gifts to become offices to be filled. This is not about positions within the Body, because there are really no positions in the true Body of Christ. Because we are all equal siblings peers and Priests in God’s true Church. There is no positional Leadership in the Body of Christ, except that Jesus is King and we are not. The only way to effectively lead in Christ’s Body is by example. We are not to stand over and above others in the church and tell them what to do or believe. We will not Lord over others in the Body. What we will do is live upright lives worthy of the callings we have received. We will be the same person in public or in private. We will love others by laying our lives down for them. The greatest calling any of us can receive is that of being a servant to all, just like Christ Jesus.
I have witnessed the church function gloriously without professional, positional, paid leadership for over 40 years. It can and does work extremely well. The church does not need those with titles or positions to be effective in its ministry. The church I am speaking of makes disciples and cares for others extremely well; and it spends all its resources on direct ministry to widows, orphans, and those in Spiritual and natural need; instead of on Clergy salaries, buildings and institutional maintenance. Any human hierarchy within the church hinders the church. I know it is a very simple way that I follow and in that way Jesus is the One and ONLY Head and Leader. I will bow down to Him and no other. Who do you follow? I certainly don’t want anyone to follow me. I am just glad when folks choose to stand alongside me.
Love and …..
Kirk Out !