The Need

We realized that we have not done a good job shepherding Zion through the importance of elders and deacons. This page is designed to be a starting point for a journey into the gift that church officers are to God's people.


In general, look for three qualifications: 1) godliness, 2) giftedness for the office, and 3) calling. Look for men who are already doing the work of the the particular office -- men who are shepherding their families and other people (elders) and men who have a heart and aptitude for mercy (deacons).


We will open nominations again in January 2020. 


This video is a good place to begin your journey. It will give you a basic sketch of the differences between elders and deacons.






Article on Elders and Deacons

Leaders in the Church by Derek Thomas (Tabletalk Magazine)

The process

NOMINATION - TRAINING - ELECTION


NOMINATION

January 2019


We will open the nomination process in January 2019. Please be prayerfully considering men who might be gifted for the office of elder or deacon.


TRAINING

Spring and Summer 2020


Nominees will be trained in theology and bible through some required reading and teaching times.


After the training time, the nominees will be examined by the elders for adherence to our doctrinal standards, spiritual maturity, and calling.


ELECTION

Early December 2020


The elder

The Book of Church Order, Chapter 8


This office is one of dignity and usefulness. The man who fills it has in Scripture different titles expressive of his various duties. As he has the oversight of the flock of Christ, he is termed bishop or pastor. As it is his duty

to be spiritually fruitful, dignified, and prudent, an example to the flock, and  to govern well in the house and Kingdom of Christ, he is termed presbyter or elder. As he expounds the Word, and by sound doctrine both exhorts and convinces the gainsayer, he is termed teacher. These titles do not indicate different grades of office, but all describe one and the same office.


He that fills this office should possess a competency of human learning and be blameless in life, sound in the faith and apt to teach. He should exhibit a sobriety and holiness of life becoming the Gospel. He should rule his own house well and should have a good report of them that are outside the Church.


It belongs to those in the office of elder, both severally and jointly, to watch diligently over the flock committed to his charge, that no corruption of doctrine or of morals enter therein. They must exercise government and discipline, and take oversight not only of the spiritual interests of the particular church, but also the Church generally when called thereunto. They should visit the people at their homes, especially the sick. They should instruct the ignorant, comfort the mourner, nourish and guard the children of the Church. They should set a worthy example to the flock entrusted to their care by their zeal to evangelize the unconverted, make disciples, and demonstrate hospitality. All those duties which private Christians are bound to discharge by the law of love are especially incumbent upon them by divine vocation, and are to be discharged as official duties. They should pray with and for the people, being careful and diligent in seeking the fruit of the preached Word among the flock.


Time Commitment: 3-5 hours per week on average. There will be some weeks when there is little or no work. But there will be some weeks that require more time. Please talk to your family about whether they (together) are willing to make this ministry commitment.


For Further Reading


Articles

The Elder's Qualifications by Kevin DeYoung


Books

Gospel Eldership by Robert Thune

The Shepherd Leader by Tim Witmer

The deacon

The Book of Church Order, Chapter 9


The office of deacon is set forth in the Scriptures as ordinary and perpetual in the Church. The office is one of sympathy and service, after the example of the Lord Jesus; it expresses also the communion of saints, especially in their helping one another in time of need.

t is the duty of the deacons to minister to those who are in need, to the sick, to the friendless, and to any who may be in distress. It is their duty also to develop the grace of liberality in the members of the church, to devise effective methods of collecting the gifts of the people, and to distribute these gifts among the objects to which they are contributed. They shall have the care of the property of the congregation, both real and personal, and shall keep in proper repair the church edifice and other buildings belonging to the congregation. In matters of special importance affecting the property of the church, they cannot take final action without the approval of the Session and consent of the congregation.

In the discharge of their duties the deacons are under the supervision and authority of the Session. In a church in which it is impossible for any reason to secure deacons, the duties of the office shall devolve upon the ruling elders.

To the office of deacon, which is spiritual in nature, shall be chosen men of spiritual character, honest repute, exemplary lives, brotherly spirit, warm sympathies, and sound judgment.

Time Commitment: 2-5 hours per week on average. There will be some weeks when there is little or no work. But there will be some weeks that require more time. Please talk to your family about whether they (together) are willing to make this ministry commitment.

For Further Reading

Articles
Deacons to the Rescue by Benjamin Merkel (Tabletalk Magazine)

Books

The New Testament Deacon: The Church's Minister of Mercy by Alexander Strauch