One of the major building blocks for the health of any church is the quality of the leadership. I am convinced that this is why Scripture is so clear, in both the Old & New Testaments about the character required to be a godly leader, and the duties of those who are called to lead.
Sadly this is often a neglected area. Many churches function with little consideration of what God says about leading His church. Consequently those churches are underserved and unhealthy. And not uncommonly churches are racked with conflict because the officers are unqualified and/or unfocused on the awesome task entrusted to them. Sometimes the conflict is created by these very officers! This happens because of lack of character, faulty understanding of the Gospel, and even the selfish ambition of those who are serving!
I’ve served with a group like that. It was hellish.
But I’ve also experienced the almost overwhelming privilege and joy of serving with humble, godly men, who loved the Lord, each other, and the church; men like Brian Fisher, Jeff Owen, Dan Van Doornik, Rick Schroeder, Ron Thomson, and Mike Woodhead, at New Hope Church; and Bob Drake, David Marr, Albert Leavengood, John Michal, Tony Tucker, and Scott Kennedy at Chattanooga Valley Presbyterian Church.
I cannot express how much these men have meant to me; and how blessed both of these churches are to have such leaders! (See Hebrews 13:17, Psalm 133)
And though I’ve been at Walnut Hill for only a short time, I see that the Elders here (Mike Leonard, Ed Wise, Del Nichols, Lonnie Phillips, James Houser, and Roger Painter) show the same godly character and commitment that makes it a joy to serve Christ’s Church.
One of the resources I have used over the years to encourage those chosen to serve as Elders is the book Biblical Eldership by Alexander Strauch. It is thoroughly biblical, and yet easy and readable.
And thanks to the labors of Mount Zion Bible Institute of Pensacola, Florida, an abbreviated version of the book has been made available for FREE.
Then a few months ago I ran across audios of a weekend seminar by Strauch on Biblical Eldership.
I mentioned these messages to the Elders at Walnut Hill several weeks ago, and told them I’d send them out by e-mail. But my AOL won’t send files that large. So I am posting the link to these messages here primarily for them.
But these messages will benefit anyone who is an Elder in the church; or anyone who is interested in becoming an Elder; or even anyone who simply wants to understand what it is that an Elder should do so they can encourage the leaders in their own church.
To listen check out Between Two Worlds .