Tuesday 17th March 2020 Devotion
Scripture:- John 13
Topic:- 6 Guiding Principles For Church Elders 
Text:- James 3:1
Elders expound biblical truth and refute doctrinal error. But what if the Teacher’s life contradicts his teaching in glaring ways?
All but the most devoted Kool-Aid drinkers stop listening. People don’t have much patience for the “Do as I say, not as I do” type of Teacher.
Even worse, hypocritical Teachers of God’s people have to face God. No wonder James warned, “Not many should become teachers, my brothers, knowing that we will receive a stricter judgment.” See James 3:1.
But when a Pastor combines sound teaching with sound living, he never lacks a devoted flock. Teaching ministry as our interim Pastor, one sermon stands out.
During Easter week, Ray taught from John 13 about Jesus washing the disciples’ feet. I remember that sermon for two reasons.
First, it was a great sermon. Ray spoke clearly and movingly about the servanthood of Jesus, not only in washing feet but in going to the cross to wash away sins. Ray called our congregation to similar humble service to one another in light of the gospel.
Second, and maybe more important, I remember that sermon because as I listened to words about servanthood, I also saw humility, service, and self-sacrifice in the man who preached it. Ray’s consistent Christian walk compelled me to listen to his message.
A Church should be able to direct a newborn believer to an elder and say: “Do you want to know what a real Christian should be like? Then look at him.”
4. Seek The Stray Sheep:
[Seeking stray members] is a sensitive task because members who wander from the Church are often fragile and hurting. As a result, they often struggle to trust others.
So when a shepherd with questionable character pursues, the lost sheep likely skedaddles. How can a sheep take a Shepherd’s efforts to “keep watch” over him seriously when the Elder cannot even keep watch over himself?
We can take it a step further. If a pastor’s hypocrisy is known beyond the walls of the Church, it hinders others from even wanting to pay a Sunday visit to the fold. See 1 Timothy 3:7.
5. Lead Confidently But Gently:
There is a tension between leading confidently and yet gently. Again, godly character is the key. See 1 Peter 5:2-3. Being an example is the antidote to being a bully. When Elders live and love like Jesus, they aren’t known for being arrogant or domineering.
Instead, they possess a Jesus-shaped humility that gives them a moral authority to which the Church willingly defers. Elders must lead by example if they hope to lead at all.
6. Lead With Others:
Overseers set an example not only as individuals but as a team. Think of your Elder group as the Church in microcosm.
The way the Shepherds interact, solve problems, strive for unity, and face challenges together should be a living dramatization for the whole Church to emulate.
An Elder team should be able to say collectively, “Imitate us as we imitate Christ together.”
Prayer Point: Oh Lord God, help me to to do available opportunity given to me effectively henceforth by fire, in the name of Jesus Christ.
Have A Wonderful Tuesday!