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Elder Qualifications Part 3

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Introduction

Greetings...
Theme: Church leadership...
Specifically elderships…recently “qualifications.”
Today we continue that...

Respectable

We find this qualification once pertaining to elders

1 Timothy 3:2 ESV
2 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,
In the KJV & NKJV it is translated “of good behavior.”
In the ASV it is translated “orderly.”

What does “respectable” mean for elders?

We find this word only one other time in the New Testament and that is in .
1 Timothy 2:9 ESV
likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire,
1 Timothy 2:9 NKJV
in like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing,
The focus here is that a man has lived in such a way that others are almost forced respect him as a person.
This is seen in its use in .
1 Timothy 2:9 ESV
9 likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire,
Notice, that the type of clothing women are expected to wear is to garner respect and reflect a godly person.
The same concept is applied to elders in that everything they do in their life is to establish respect.
Their orderly respectable behavior is obvious in their work, their family, their social life, the religious life…everything!

Summery

An elder that doesn’t live in such a way as to garner respect in their life is an elder that will never lead the sheep to respectable living.
How can an elder expect others to live respectable, orderly, good behavior lives if they themselves don’t?

Gentle

We find this qualification once pertaining to elders

1 Timothy 3:3 ESV
3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.

What does “gentle” mean for elders?

This word, gentle, is found four other times in the New Testament.
The focus here is that a man can tolerate and thus kindly handle any person’s emotional actions.
Notice slaves were to show respect for the gentle and unjust master.
1 Peter 2:18 ESV
18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust.
Titus was to preach that people were to be gentle and not quarrelsome.
Titus 3:2 ESV
2 to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people.
It is no accident that these are placed next to each other.
James shows that “wisdom from above” is gentle and open to reason.
James 3:17 ESV
17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere.
Elders must be able to listen and then gently handle the emotions of others so that they can guide them to righteousness.

Summery

If an man can’t handle the erratic emotions of others and control his emotions enough to gently lead that person in the direction he/she needs to go, that man cannot lead God’s sheep where they ought to go.

Self-Controlled, Just, & Holy

These three qualifications are found in one passage pertaining to elders

Titus 1:8 NKJV
8 but hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just, holy, self-controlled,
It’s fitting these three are found together as they represent the “three-fold” duty of man and all the more important duty of an elder.

What does “self-controlled” mean for an elder?

This word is found only in our text here. It is translated “self-controlled (NKJV…), temperate (KJV), disciplined (ESV…)
It is translated “self-controlled (NKJV…), temperate (KJV), disciplined (ESV…)
The focus here is that a man must “live right with himself.”
An elder must be confident in his walk with God, not arrogance, confidence.
He has considered his walk with God.
Haggai 1:5 ESV
5 Now, therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts: Consider your ways.
Haggai 1:
He has tested his own work for the Lord.
Galatians 6:4 ESV
4 But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.
He knows he is “in the faith” because he has tested himself.
2 Corinthians 13:5 ESV
5 Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

What does “just” mean for an elder?

This word is found seventy-nine times in the New Testament.
The focus here is that a man must “live right toward others.”
An elder is one that “passes just judgment on others” (Thayer’s).
In the same way elders seek just judgment from God, they must render just judgments to their sheep.
Just judgments take into account everything they possibly can such as maturity, gender, mercy, God’s Word…so that they can make the just judgment and lead that one closer to Christ.
The Good Shepherd is an elders example and of the Good Shepherd we read...
Psalm 9:4 ESV
4 For you have maintained my just cause; you have sat on the throne, giving righteous judgment.
Ps

What does “holy” mean for an elder?

This word is found eight times in the New Testament.
The focus here is a that a man must “live right toward God.”
An elders understands he is to be separated from this world.
Of the eight times this word “holy” is found six of them are applied to God, one to elders, and one to a persons worship.
An elder is separated from the world in love.
James 4:4 ESV
4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
An elder is separated from the world in wisdom.
1 Corinthians 1:25 ESV
25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
1 Cor
James 1:5 ESV
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
James 1:

Summery

An eldership is confident in their walk with God, justly judges according to God’s Word, and lives holy or separate lives from the world.

Conclusion

Elders have a grave and seemingly relentless work but the reward is great.
Invitation
Isaiah 59:1–2 ESV
1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear; 2 but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear.
Philippians 2:6–7 ESV
6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.
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