The church is under the spiritual authority of the pastors/elders.
• They provide teaching, discipline, leadership, direction, protection (Hebrews 13:17; 1 Peter 5:1-5; Eph. 4:11-16; Acts 20:27-29; 2 Tim. 4:3-4; Tit. 1:9).
• The church must disciple by teaching, training, and imitation under the direction of the elders (1 Cor. 4:16; 11:1; 2 Tim. 2:2; Phil. 4:9).
• Local believers serve as leaders (Acts 14:21-23; 20:17; Titus 1:5). There were no outsiders involved in the leadership of any indigenous churches.
• Laity fill leadership positions (Rom. 16:3-16; I Cor. 16:15-18; Col. 4:15; 2 Tim. 4:19-21; Titus 3:12-13). These lay leaders are typically bi-vocational.
• Leaders fulfill the requirements of 1 Timothy 3, Titus 1, they have a high level of commitment and Christian character.
• Leaders train and enable others, usually in teams, to do the work of ministry. They give freedom to serve. There is an openness to change and innovation.
Questions to investigate:
a. Are we naturally inclined to obey our parents, government, teachers, elders?
b. What kinds of directives might we receive from church leaders that we must obey? That we should not obey?
c. Why are indigenous leaders more effective than non-indigenous leaders?
d. What qualifies someone for church leadership?
e .What are four types of church discipline? 1 - Conviction (sermons, SS class, home Bible studies , 2 - iron on iron (personal relationships) , 3 - factious man, elder intervention (Titus 3:10; Romans 16:17) 4 - excommunication (Matthew 18)
f. What happens if the church ignores discipline? What happens if the church does not obey its leaders?
g. What does the word doctrine mean?
h. How are pastors and leaders recognized in the local church? What is ordination?