If you come by here often enough you know I’m a huge admirer of what the Lord is doing at Mars Hill Church, Seattle. I’ve been on their site today and have been reading about how they have added 1000 new attenders this autumn and expect to have added another 1000 by the new year. Praise the Lord. As such, they are appointing new elders to help oversee the ministry. What I found interesting (and excellent) is that the elders undergo scrutiny by the current elder board, then a four week scrutiny by the congregation. After that four weeks is up the elder board have to unanimously vote them onto the board. The qualifications for an elder are the same as can be found in Titus and Timothy but put into a different format:
- Relation to God: A man (male) above reproach (without habitual character defects), able to teach (teach and defend sound doctrine), not a new convert (spiritually mature).
- Relation to Family: Husband of one wife (one-woman man, sexually pure), Has obedient children (successful father), manages family well (provides for, leads, organizes, loves).
- Relation to Self: Temperate (mentally and emotionally stable), self-controlled (disciplined life, sound decision-making), not given to drunkenness (without addictions), not a lover of money (financially content and upright).
- Relation to Others: Respectable (worth following and imitating), hospitable (welcomes strangers–especially non-Christians for evangelism), Not violent (even-tempered), Gentle (kind, gracious, loving), Not contentious (peaceable, not quarrelsome or divisive), Good reputation with outsiders (respected by non-Christians).
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