WHAT IS THE WORK OF ELDERS?
The work of elders is not legislated to them by the congregation, by which they are to bow to the beck and call of every Tom, Dick and Harry in the congregation. But it is judicious given to them from above. This is the work that they MUST do in spite of every Tom, Dick, or Harry.
They are to take heed unto themselves, Acts 20:28.
They are to be guided by the Word of God, Acts 20:32.
They are to be examples to the flock, 1 Pet. 5:3.
They are to take the oversight thereof, 1 Pet. 5:2.
They are to tend the flock of God which is among them, Acts 20:28; 1 Pet. 5:2.
They are to be sure that the flock is fed, and that they are fed the right thing.
They are to supervise the feeding, be sure that the feeding is done right both in the work and the examples set forth by the various teachers.
They need to try to keep the congregation where they can be fed the right thing.
They are to rule well, 1 Tim. 5:17.
They are to keep the flock together and at peace as much as it is possible.
They are to use discipline where discipline is necessary.
They are to keep down sin and reproach in the church, even if it calls for disfellowshipping the offenders.
They are to watch in behalf of souls, Heb. 13:17. An active, constant watch is required toward every soul in the congregaiton.
WATCHING FOR SOULS.
In doing this, it requires advising with members, praying for and with them, hearing and keeping their confidences and giving careful and considered advice. In ruling, watching and feeding the flock for proper learning and development, elders must watch for a "loss" of appetite on the part of any one of the sheep. Immediately at the sign of a losing of appetite such sheep should be attended to to restore that appetite for the Word of God. In concluding the thoughts concerning the work of elders, we need to remind all that; Christ is the Chief Shepherd, 1 Pet. 5:4, therefore, the elders are just under-shepherds and must give an account unto the Chief Shepherd in the day of judgment for all of their decisions and actions in the work of the church. This means that in all times and all matters they must act within the realm of divine authority. It is impossible to oversee and rule a project without running it. Also all things must have a law to have order, therefore, when the elders run a congregation, they do it by the law of God.
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