Our mission is to “walk as the Messiah walked.” We will therefore lead the members of this fellowship as He guided us.
Please note what guidance the Messiah gave to His disciples in Matthew 20:25-28:
25 But Yahshua called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them.
26 But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you let him be your minister;
27 And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant:
28 Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto but to minister, and to give his life as ransom for many.
It will be instructive to turn to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance and look up some key words in the above scriptures.
v.25 dominion, 2634: “to lord it over, gain dominion over, subdue; in some contexts there is an implication that this exercise of authority is harsh”
v.26 minister, 1249 (noun): “servant, a person who renders service and help to others”
v.27 servant, 1401: “slave, bondman, of a lower social strata than a free person”
v.28 ministered, 1247 (verb) servant
minister, 1247 (verb) servant
see number 1249 above for definition
Messiah clearly does not want the person or persons who are chief among us to exercise a harsh authority or dominion over the members of this fellowship. The leader is to be a servant, and not a dictator.
The Messiah provides further guidance in Matthew 23:11-12:
11 But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant
12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
Paul also provides some traits that a leader should demonstrate. Please refer to 1Timothy 3:2-12. These traits are: married, vigilant, sober, of good behavior, hospitable and able to teach, not given to wine, not a bully or violent, not greedy, one that rules well in his own house.
Paul provides additional insights in 2Thessalonians. He who is chief among us should work or have their own source of income. They are not to be paid for their service to the fellowship. Note 2:8-10:
8 Neither did we eat any man’s bread for nought; but wrought with labor and travail night and day, that we might not be chargeable to any of you:
9 Not because we have not the power, but to make ourselves an ensample unto you to follow us.
10 For ever when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.
At the present time, we have one elder who regards himself as a servant and is not paid for his service. The members of this fellowship have experienced harsh and greedy leadership and do not believe this to be the Messiah’s way.
Leadership is provided by men and not by women. Paul addresses this in 1Corinthians 15:34-35:
34 Let your women keep silent in the ekklesia: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
35 And if they will learn anything, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the ekklesia.
In reviewing the Hebrew Scriptures, there is no example of women exercising religious leadership. The firstborn male was originally the priest of the family. Later when the priests or Levites performed leadership roles, women were excluded.
The term, elder, comes from the Greek, presbyteros, Strong’s #4245. References to elders are found in the following scriptures:
James 5:14 – “call for the elders of the ekklesia”
1Peter 5:1 – “the elders which are among you”
Titus 1:5 – “ordain elders in every city”
1Timothy 5:17 – “Let the elders that rule be counted worthy”
1Peter 5:1 – “…who (Peter) am also an elder, and a witness…”
1Timothy 5:1 – “rebuke not an elder but intreat him as a Father”
1Timothy 5:15 – “against an elder receive not an accusation”
The elder of our fellowship is responsible for teaching, leading the services, anointing, laying on of hands, and providing guidance with love. An elder is to be an example of loving guidance. 1Corinthians 13:4-6 provides the traits exhibited as part of love: suffereth long, kind, envieth not, vaunteth not itself, not puffed up, does not behave unseemly, seeketh not her own, not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, rejoiceth not in inquity, rejoiceth in the truth.
We are a small home-based fellowship presently with one elder. When you contact us for information, it will be the elder that will respond to your request. May Yahweh bless you as you seek to know more of His truth and reach out to us.