Leadership in the Local Church


What is a Leader?

1. He shows the people the way to head.
2. He teaches the people about God.
3. He makes sure there is no oppression in the midst.
4. He keeps enemies at bay.


What is an Elder? There are three Greek words in the Bible for Elder:

  1. Episkopos: which means Bishop or overseer,
  2. Poimen: Which means Shepherd or Pastor,
  3. Presbuteros: Which is the word for Elder.

Number 1 is the TASK.
Number 2 is the MINISTRY.
Number 3 is the QUALIFICATION.

All of there refer to the same position, that of an ELDER.

1 Peter 5:1-6

In general what the Bible says about Eldership is:

  1. In the passages where Elders are mentioned it is always in the plural, there should always be more than one Elder in a church, it stops domination and it also stops overwork.
  2. The Elder should always remain among the people, and should have emerged from among the people, there should never be one-day wonders, they should always come in humility.
  3. An Elder (shepherd) is always one who will lead the sheep, not drive them. An Elder must be an example in all that he does, Jesus should be seen in them. An Elder should supply safety and security for the flock.
  4. The ministry of an Elder (overseer) is to “look around”, to be alert to what is happening, inside and outside the church.
  5. An Elder must never “Lord” it over the flock, but come in humility, and be an example, and be able to show the way to head.
  6. Eldership must themselves be able to submit, and be corrected by one another, more than that they should relish correction, to enable them to live better lives for the Glory of God.

1 Tim 3:1-7, Titus 1:5-9

In these verses you have the qualification of an Elder. If any Elder doesn’t match up to these qualification, then we should consider if they should be Elders, and we would need to pray for them.

No Elder has total authority in any aspect of any other person life, but advice can be given, free will must always prevail.

What, if any, is the differences between an Elder and the Ephesian 4 Ministries then?

Eph 4:7-16

The people in the five fold ministries of Ephesians and Elders but also much more. 1 Peter 5:1 Peter was an Elder but also an Apostle.

An Elder is someone with spiritual authority and maturity, functioning in a leadership capacity within a local church. The Eph 4 Ministries are more than Elder. It is a life calling for some Elders, it is a life calling for some Elders to move out into their ministry.

Eph 4:9

These ministry gifts are given by the ascended Lord Jesus Christ himself. There are no lists of qualities for them given in scriptures by which we can recognize then, but we can draw from many different scriptures what they should be. With an Elder it is easier as we have already looked at Titus and Timothy. These verses list the qualities and qualifications which we should look for and when we see that person we can recognize it, set him apart and pray for God’s anointing on him.

The difference in an Elder is someone whom God calls and man appoints. With the Eph 4 Ministries, God calls and also appoints.
Elders are only recognized in the local church but can have opportunities to preach in other churches.
The Eph 4 ministry has a greater anointing and authority. If these ministries emerge within a local fellowship, it tells us that either the church is or will be very big some day.
In Acts 2 the church grew from 120 to 3,000 people, then the sky’s the limit. Why? Jesus appointed 12 men who were apostles. In Acts 11,12,& 13 we find emerging teachers, apostles, prophets all from within the church. It is always on God’s heart for growth in numbers.

So what is the job of the Ephesians 4 Ministries?


Man of vision who sees things in the word and by the spirit.


Spear-heads the church in evangelism to reach the lost world.


Wedding ring, love finger. A pastor has the gift to bring the love of Jesus down into the hearts of men and women in communicating the word in a way which makes you feel special and important.


Knows how to teach the truth in a solid and practical way. He knows how to get the truth into our lives.


The Thumb. He can generally do all the other 4 ministries and he is in touch with all the other ministries to lead, guide, and direct so they can all work together. OR


We have always had these ministries, for what was John Wesley, with the ability to organize all his new converts into house groups?, but an Apostle.
C.H. Spurgen, A.W. Tozer – Prophets.
George Whitfield, D.L. Moody, Smith Wigglesworth, Billy Grham, Reinhard Bonnke – Evangelist.
Jonathan Edwards, Charlie Hodge, Josh Mcdowel, Greg Haslem – Teachers.
To the body of Christ.

It is no longer going to be the mega superstar, the Terry Vergo, Brin Jones, but lots & lots of T E A M S.