Page 19 - May 2023 - Truth & Tidings
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therefore which believe he is precious.”   us from the Word of God, have guided the
        Again, it is obvious from the context that   assembly in a past day, and were faithful
        the overseer who “rules well” be assigned   to the “end of their conversation.” Let
        a very high valuation. What is not so obvi-  us not lament the current circumstances
        ous is what “double honour” means. The   we find ourselves in without them, but
        language suggests high spiritual valua-  instead let us live like they lived, serve the
        tion, but financial assistance is also found   Lord like they served, and appreciate in
        in the context of the chapter. This possibly   our present overseers the same character
        means that the spiritual as well as the ma-
        terial value of the overseer be considered   we saw in those who have already finished
        when necessary. In the affluent western   their course.
        world this would seem to be a rare neces-  Obey Them, Submit to Them
        sity, but in some places the overseer may
        be required to devote time and energy to   (Heb 13:17)
        the shepherding of the flock that he would   As we consider the exhortation of this
        otherwise spend in secular employment.      verse, we would draw your attention

        Trust Them (1Ti 5:19)                 again to Titus 1:7. There we see that the
          In verse 17 of this chapter mention is   guides of the assembly are “steward[s]
                                              of God; not selfwilled.” The assembly’s
        made of the elder who “rules well.” This   guides do so not with self-interest but as
        seems to imply that there may be elders
        who don’t rule well. And now in verse   stewards of that which belongs to God,
        19, the possibility of a sinning overseer   and it is commendable and scriptural that
        is brought before us again. While it is not   there be a cooperative spirit from those
        our intention to give undue attention to   who make up the assembly. While obedi-
        this possible failure, the possibility does   ence and submission are not behaviors
        exist and must be acknowledged. Equally   that fit in well with our nature, we can be
        possible, false accusation can be brought   reminded that yielding to the oversight
        against an overseer, and this passage   of the assembly is an acknowledgement
        deals with that and the preservation of   of God’s order.
        the elder’s reputation and esteem. The
        Old Testament principle is carried into   Salute Them (Heb 13:24)
        the New: Let it be by the mouth of “two   The writer of the Hebrews epistle sends
        or three witnesses” that an accusation be   a closing greeting to the overseers men-
        made against an elder in the church.
                                              tioned in this chapter. The writer of this
        Remember Them (Heb 13:7)              article takes this closing opportunity to
          “Remember them” is a tender exhorta-  encourage all to lovingly greet, encourage,
        tion to these troubled believers to think   appreciate, recognize, esteem, honour,
        back on those who have gone on before,   trust and obey the overseers you know.
        who ruled well, who have left an example,   They feed the flock of God, they watch
        who persevered to the end, “whose faith   for your souls, they labor among you, and
        follow.” Much value can be had in “re-  they guide the people of God, maintaining
        membering” those who have influenced   order until the Lord returns.

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