Presentation on theme: "History is full of “what ifs” when it comes to leadership. We can ask a bunch of “what ifs” in the history of God’s people, too. Far too many congregation."— Presentation transcript:
History is full of “what ifs” when it comes to leadership. We can ask a bunch of “what ifs” in the history of God’s people, too. Far too many congregation do not have proper spiritual leadership. What are the characteristics of a congregation that doesn’t have elders to guide her?
THERE IS A LACK OF BIBLICAL ACCOUNTABILITY In a Shepherdless Congregation,
The elders of a congregation serve to provide accountability. “Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you” (Heb 13:17). “We urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you” (1 Thess 5:12).
Good elders nip problems in the bud. He must hold “fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict” (Titus 1:9). Why did the congregations on Crete need elders so desperately? Titus 1:10-11. Elders still hold us accountable.
THERE IS A LACK OF BIBLICAL COMPASSION In a Shepherdless Congregation,
“When the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away” (1 Pet 5:4). That has important implications for modern elders: Elders cannot govern the church however they choose. Elders need to model their pastoral care after Jesus.
Jesus, the Chief Shepherd, was full of compassion. Matt 4:23-24. When Jesus encountered a widow who had just lost her only son, “He had compassion on her and said to her, ‘Do not weep’” (Lk 7:13). Jesus condemned the religious leaders of His day for a lack of compassion. “They bind heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers” (Matt 23:4).
In a shepherdless congregation, hurts go unattended. Js 5:14-15. I think this refers to spiritual, rather than physical, illness. If there are no shepherds in a congregation, Christians cannot go the elders to confess sin & seek spiritual help.
We owe it to our elders to help them shepherd us. “What man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him?” (1 Cor 2:11).
THERE IS A LACK OF BIBLICAL DIRECTION In a Shepherdless Congregation,
Elders function as the overseers in a congregation. “Let the elders who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine” (1 Tim 5:17). “Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct” (Heb 13:7). Without elders, organization perishes. Without elders, confusion prevails.
THERE IS A LACK OF BIBLICAL EXAMPLE In a Shepherdless Congregation,
“Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock” (1 Pet 5:2-3).
Jesus, the Chief Shepherd, provided an example for His flock. “Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps” (1 Pet 2:21). Elders are to be models of Christian living. 1 Tim 3:1-7. Elders must lead the way.
Do you need to follow Jesus’ example of obedience to the Father?
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