Title: Appointing God's Leaders
Purpose: To move Christians to appoint Godly Leaders Biblically
Intro 1. How do we go about appointing Elders? What is the process? 3 opinions:
a. Elders appointed by nomination and vote
- Often it becomes a popularity contest
- A person often starts to politic
- What if only 51% vote for a person, it is a simple majority
b. Elders are appointed by the preacher
- This used to be the most common way elders appointed
- Bad experience of a preacher in a little church in Arkansas
- Three men got in good with the preacher
- They managed to get him to appoint them as elders when they
had no business being elders
- The elders turned around and fired him and controlled
c. Present elders select other elders
2. Does the Bible give any guidance concerning selection and appointment
a. We looked at the Old Testament for concept of shepherd & moved to New
Testament teaching concerning Godís leaders
b. We will do the same for appointment of Godís leaders
I. Appointment of Old Testament Leaders
A. There were judges and prophets. Normally appointed by God
a. I Sam 8:1-6- People desired a King, Samuel consults God
b. I Sam 9:15-17 - God chooses Saul
c. I Sam 10:1 - Saul formally annoints (appoints) him privately
d. I Sam 10:24 - The people consented (v.27 but not all)
a. Known as the Shepherd King (Ps 78:72)
b. He a type of Jesus, the shepherd (Ezek 34:23)
c. I Sam 16:6-13 - God chooses David, Samuel annoints him
d. 2 Same 5:1-3 - The people gave their consent
3. Common threads in appointment of Godís leader in Old Testament
a. God was consulted, God was the standard for WHO was leader
b. Leader was usually formally appointed by a human leader
c. The people gave their consent
C. So in the Old Testament, God had the say over who became leaders
1. Formally appointed by a preacher
2. People gave their consent
II. Appointment of leaders in the New Testament
1. Acts 1:15-26 - The selection of Mathias
a. Qualifications were laid out
b. They prayed (v.24) before the selection
2. Acts 6:1-6
a. Apostles laid out qualificaitons
b. The people did the actual choosing
c. Apostles appointed them. Prayer and laying on of hands
3. Acts 13:1-3
a. Holy Spirit (God) selects
b. Appointed with prayer and fasting and laying on of hands
B. Instructions specific to Elders
1. Titus 1:5 - Titus sent to appoint elders in Crete
2. I Tim 5:21-22
a. Timothy appointed elders
b. No partiality
c. Was told not to be too hasty in laying on of hands
- Not talking about giving miraculous gifts
- Only Apostles able to do that
3. Acts 14:23 - Saul and Barnabas appointed them with prayer & fasting
C. But is there mention of God (lik in the O.T.) making the choice?
1. Acts 20:28 - On guard for self & flock Holy Spirit made you overseers
2. Eph 4:11 - Who gave some as Pastors? -- God, not preachers
3. The standards in I Tim 3 & Titus 1 come from God, itís His choice
D. Specific instruction then is that in the New Testament, Preachers appointed elders.
How was it done?
1. Timothy and Titus were told what to teach concerning qualifications
2. Most likely what happened was simlilar to Acts 6
a. People were told qualifications (which made it Godís choice)
b. People chose someone (like in O.T. - the people consented)
c. Preacher appointed them
- Like the preacherís of the Old Testament and the Apostles
- With prayer and fasting and the laying on of hands
3. Preacherís of Godís word would oversee the whole process
III. How it should be done today
A. As always, it is Godís choice, the standards need to be understood
1. Understanding Godís rationale
a. It needs to be understood what a shepherd is
b. It needs to be understood who a shepherd can be
2. Remember, God gives some as Pastors and teachers (Eph 4:11)
B. The selection process
1. You donít choose someone then they become a shepherd
2. You choose someone that already demonstrates heart of shepherd
3. Remember the qualifications
a. Exemplary Christian Character (honorable men)
b. Ability to Communicate in wisdom and gentleness
c. Proven leadership ability
4. Not perfection, but suitability
C. Congregation agrees on the selection process the implements it
D. Person is formally charged and ordained by other elders or the preacher
E. The people give their consent
IV. Shepherding without Shepherds
A. What about the situation where there are no elders to be appointed?
1. Is there Biblical instruction on how to handle leadership without elders?
2. This is neither a scriptural or unscriptural issue. It is a "nonscriptural
issue since scripture does not give specific instruction.
1. Monthly Men's Business Meetings.
a. What is done is not leadership, but management - budgets, physical
building concerns, parking lots, etc.
b. A group that meets month after month is seldom the same. There are
some that attend periodically, and others that only show up only to
sway a vote, often bringing a bunch of other men who rarely attend
c. It is monthly. Matters often have to wait up to thirty days till
the next meeting to be discussed
d. The man who has been a Christian only six months has the same clout
(through his vote) as the man who has been a Christian for years!
2. The preacher is the leader in the church
a. The preacher in effect becomes a one-man-pastor.
b. The congregation will have the view that all of the leadership load
goes to the preacher and it may remain that way
c. Leadership potential might not be developed in others with this paradigm.
d. One man cannot effectively shepherd a flock with many more than
e. If and when the preacher leaves, everything falls apart.
3. The congregation chooses and appoints leaders based on Biblical qualities of
a. God has defenite standards for leadership, these should be observed
as closely as possible
b. To say "We don't have qualified men for elders, therefore we will have
an open Men's Meeting with no standards other than being a male
Christian" totally ignores God's standards. It would be like saying
"I owe you 100 dollars, but have only 99. Since I don't have all of
it, I will only give you 2 dollars."
c. When a business owner wants to hire a leader for his business and
can't find a man with ALL of the qualities he is looking for, he
doesn't just dismiss his list of qualities and hire just anyone.
He finds the person that most closely fits what he is looking for.
He finds the best person available.
d. Since this is not an full fledged elder, leaders should be appointed
by the congregation for specific leadership tasks for a specific
period of time.
e. This could be a stepping stone to a Biblical Eldership.
f. This, I believe is the best model for leadership in a congregation
1. This has been a technical lesson
2. We see that there were three involved in selection:
a. God (He is the one who lays out the standards)
b. The people (The people do the selection)
c. The preacher (The preacher leads in the laying on of hands)
2. Ordination ceremonies: Entire congregation lays their hands on the elder
3. Review of Series