elder led

In an earlier post regarding congregationalism, I made the point that God’s model of leadership in the local ekklesia is elder led. Phil Newton has written an article for Tabletalk magazine touching on this topic so I can link to his work.

Here is part of Phil’s introduction and first point, but go read his article for the other three points.

Christ gave elder leadership to the church for its growth, development, and unity. Yet tradition often tugs stronger than biblical order for those refusing elder leadership. Others have elders but neglect applying biblical standards to them. Paul’s letter to Titus offers great help for both cases (Titus 1:5-9).

First, plural leadership is the norm for every church: “appoint elders in every city as I directed you.” “Elders” is plural and “in every town” is singular. It indicates multiple elders serving each church on Crete (1:5). Each reference to local church elders demonstrates plurality as the New Testament practice (see Acts 14:23; 15:22; 20:17 that show this same pattern of plurality). Paul’s reason for plurality within even small congregations makes sense. It provides accountability, support, and encouragement, increased wisdom, and diversity of gifts to increase ministry effectiveness.

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