church governance

EFDC is a Elder-Board Led Church

Equipped For Destiny is committed to the Bible’s teaching that men who hold the offices of Elder and Deacon are to oversee various functions of the local church.

The Bible’s teaching on the subject of two church offices is found in 1 Timothy 3:1-16 and Titus 1:5-9. Although there are three terms used for the offices of the church: bishop, elder, and deacon, analysis of these terms indicates that bishop and elder are used interchangeably.

elder Qualification (Titus 1:6-9)

“6 An elder must be blameless, faithful to his wife, a man whose children believe[b] and are not open to the charge of being wild and disobedient. Since an overseer manages God’s household, he must be blameless—not overbearing, not quick-tempered, not given to drunkenness, not violent, not pursuing dishonest gain. Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined. He must hold firmly to the trustworthy message as it has been taught, so that he can encourage others by sound doctrine and refute those who oppose it.” 

  • Above reproach
  • Able to teach
  • Husband to one wife
  • Not addicted to wine
  • Temperate
  • Not antagonistic
  • Prudent
  • Uncontentious
  • Respectable
  • Free from the love of money
  • Hospitable
  • Manage own household
  • Not a new convert

elder duties

  • The Scriptures show that the elders serve by leading and that their responsibility involves the spiritual oversight of the congregation. All elders are equal in authority but not necessarily equal in influence.

    The elders’ primary responsibilities include:

plurality of elders

The Scriptures teach that a plurality of elders governed individual New Testament churches (Acts 14:23; Acts 20:28; Titus 1:5; Philippians 1:1). The Scripture does not mention any congregations featuring a stand-alone pastor and leader. A plurality of godly elders, exercising their individual giftedness, squares with the Scripture’s teaching that wisdom is found in a multitude of godly counselors (Proverbs 11:14; Proverbs 12:15; Proverbs 15:22; Proverbs 19:20; Proverbs 24:6). This truth does not eliminate the possibility and likelihood that one or more elders will stand out from the others as more public in their ministries or more influential in their workings on the Elder Board.

senior pastor

The Equipped For Destiny Senior Pastor automatically serves as an elder and, because of his public presence and responsibility before the congregation, may be considered first among equals as a member of the Elder Board. The Senior Pastor should be gifted primarily as a preacher/teacher and as a visionary leader.

deacons

The Bible teaches that deacons lead by serving (Acts 6). The qualifications for elders and deacons are the same regarding an individual’s character, but they differ in aptitude. The elders are to be able to teach while the deacons are to be able and proved as servants.

deacons qualifications (1 Timothy 3:8-13)

“8 Likewise deacons must be reverent, not double-tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy for money, holding the [f]mystery of the faith with a pure conscience. 10 But let these also first be tested; then let them serve as deacons, being  found blameless. 11 Likewise, their wives must be reverent, not [g]slanderers, temperate, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 13 For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a good standing and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.”

  • Individual of dignity
  • Above reproach
  • Not double tongued
  • First tested as servants
  • Not addicted to wine
  • Spouses must be faithful
  • Temperate
  • Not fond of sordid gain
  • Holding to the mystery of faith with a clear conscience
  • Husband of one wife
  • Manages household well

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