The Ruling Elder & Church Leadership

It is a hallmark of Presbyterianism to value and apply the Scriptural adage that “all things are to be done decent and in order.” While the immediate context of 1 Corinthians 14:40 concerns corporate worship, the principle therein is taught and applied throughout the Scriptures. It was Joseph’s administration, empowered by the Lord, that saved the world from famine. A struggling-to-keep-up Moses was instructed by his father-in-law to appoint men under him to guide and judge the people. In 1 Timothy, one of the qualifications for an Elder is that he must manage his household well, “for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church?” (1 Tim. 3:5). The same word for manage in 1 Timothy 3 is used in Romans 12:8 to refer to one with the gift of leadership.

…Ruling Elders with gifts and experience in administration need to step up and help in this regard, even before regular compensation in the form of a paycheck is involved. Even now as a Senior Pastor on a pastoral staff of three and with a total of ten employees at Meadowview Reformed Presbyterian Church, I am so grateful for a Session with elders who are willing to go with me to meetings I have with staff members in order to reinforce and own the direction we give our staff. However capable I may be to carry out the administration needs of the church, I am grateful for Ruling Elders who will play “air traffic controller” on many issues that require coordination and collaboration. I am likewise grateful for men on the Diaconate who serve that role with regard to mercy ministries, stewardship, property renovations, and other things under their purview.

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