Page 6 - May 2023 - Truth & Tidings
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“        lease submit your resume, and   do not” (Mat 23:2-3).  He enjoined them to
              once we have reviewed it, we may
                                              recognize the position of leadership even
        Pcall you for an interview.” Then     though the men failed to live as they ought
        you look over the job description: long   to. Those men would be held accountable
        hours, loss of sleep, being misunderstood,   for their own failure; my responsibility is
        criticism to be expected, heart-wrenching   to observe what they say when it is in ac-
        decisions to be made. Do I really want   cordance with the Word of God.
        this work?                              Another consideration is that in small
          The above is certainly not the way in   assemblies God works with what is avail-
        which the Spirit of God raises up men   able. A man may not be apt to teach, but
        to fulfill the work of leadership in an as-  circumstances require that he rise to the
        sembly. But He has given us at least two,   work of leading the assembly. This reflects
                                              a weakness among us that we cannot deny.
        if not three, descriptions majoring on the   But keep in mind that the vast majority of
        character of the men He chooses to make   qualifications are moral and spiritual, and
        leaders in the assembly. Those lists are   not related to gift. Thankfully, God is far
        found in Acts 20:25-35, 1 Timothy 3:1-7   more gracious than we are.
        and Titus 1:5-9. In addition, Scriptures   Having hopefully dismissed one or
        such as Isaiah 40:11, John 21:15-17, 1 Thes-  two wrong concepts concerning the
        salonians 5:14-15, 1 Peter 5:1-4, Hebrews   purpose of these lists, the question can
        13:17, and others focus more on the work   be asked, “What is their purpose?” As
        of the overseer.                      suggested, it is a list of qualifications by
          The purpose of those Scriptures that   which I judge myself and any aspirations
        deal with the qualifications of leaders   I may have for the work of leadership in
        must be understood in their context. This   an assembly.  How do we approach the
        is not a checklist for me to hold up against   qualifications? I think they can be divided
        those in leadership in my assembly. This   into a few groups. I will use 1 Timothy 3
        is a list by which I judge myself if I am in   as the backbone for our consideration but
        leadership or aspire to that work (1Ti 3:1).   will interweave some of what we have in
        Many have used the lists of qualifications   Titus 1 as well.
        as an excuse to dismiss a leader’s moral   Traits that Are Essential
        right to guide the assembly, insisting that   “Blameless” heads the list of 11 moral
        they can disregard anything said by a   qualities, six that are positive and five that
        particular man because “he is not really   are negative. The word “blameless” occurs
        an overseer according to 1 Timothy 3:1-4.”  a total of three times in the letter (3:2; 5:7;
          Please remember what the Lord Jesus   6:14  –  “unrebukable”)  and  carries  the
                                              thought of being beyond reproach or un-
        told His disciples. They were challenged   assailable. No charge can be substantiated
        by the scribes and Pharisees and their   against him. He is marked by self-control
        hypocrisy. Yet He instructed them, “The   and a sense of the seriousness of life. He
        scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’   is not influenced by alcohol or avarice,
        seat: All therefore whatsoever they bid   power or place. “Given to hospitality” in
        you observe, that observe and do; but do   ¹ Bible quotations in this article are from the
        not ye after their works: for they say, and   KJV.

        134 TRUTH kTidings   May  2023
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