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Discussion Forum : Scriptures and Doctrine : Deacons in the Church

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wijnand
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Joined: 2006/3/31
Posts: 115


 Re: Deacons in the Church

What I saw in my studies so far:

The English word for 'deacon' = servant.
So the texts in the New Testament in some translations say 'Elders and deacons', but should be read like: Elders and Servants.

Words for elders are:
- Elders
- Shepherds (pastor)
- Overseers (bisshop)
- Leaders

So you got one group that is leading, over-seeing, shepherding the flock --> elders.
And you got one group supporting them in serving in practical ways so that the elders (and in first the apostles) could focus on there ministry --> servants. But these servants could have more gifts, so they could 'preach' like Stephen or be evangelists like Filiph. But the duty of 'servants' is to practicly serve the church and in that way the elders can focus on 'taking care of the flock in prayer and in ministry of the word'.

And I don't really understand why we look at church-history as a 'foundation'. I understand we can learn from church-history, but to answer the questions, we should first look at the bible (imo).


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Wijnand de Ridder

 2017/9/12 5:35Profile
havok20x
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Joined: 2008/9/14
Posts: 893
Pineville, LA

 Re:

wijnand,

Thank you for your comment. It was very helpful!

Let me explain, practically why church history is very important:

You use it all the time to help in your determinations of what is biblical and what is true. You of course first having the cornerstone of Christ, and the foundation of scriptures; however, if someone comes to you with some new, false doctrine, not only do you have the scriptures testifying against that doctrine, but you have the history of the church and it's traditional understanding of the truth backing you up.

When dealing with Jehovah's witnesses, for example, I don't have to invent all kinds of counterarguments to deal with them and their doctrine that Christ is not God. I can bring the arguments and scriptural proofs that Athanasius used to solidly convince an ailing church that Jesus Christ is indeed of the "same substance" (homoousion) as God the Father and not of "similar substance" as the Arians (and now JWs) believe. I will of course use the scriptures, but why should I reinvent the wheel, when it has already been done for me?

Church history, like any extrabiblical source should be handled carefully and not at the expense of a plain understanding of scripture. But it is useful, and I do believe foundational for believers to know so that whenever they hear something strange/new/unclear, that they themselves can harken back to church history, bibles in hand, and recognize that there is indeed nothing new under the sun.

 2017/9/12 7:23Profile
havok20x
Member



Joined: 2008/9/14
Posts: 893
Pineville, LA

 Re:

Thanks, Greg! I already have the volume by Eusebius, but I haven't read it :(. I will look at the other as well!

 2017/9/12 7:31Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2012
Joplin, Missouri

 Re:

Wijnand: I agree. I have studied this and come to the same conclusion. I found that bishop and elder are used interchangeably in scripture. Both really just mean overseer. They are ordained to have oversight over and ministry to the body. They are charged with the growth and maturing of the body of Christ.

Deacons on the other hand are those who have been ordained to served in leadership over a particular area of ministry such as Stephen and the first deacons serving over the ministry of feeding the Grecian widows.

Something else that I have found. One does not have to be an apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, or teacher to be an bishop/elder. However, among the eldership there are given the gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, and teacher to minister to the body specifically for the purpose of maturing and growing the body to the point that the body stands as a fully grown and mature spiritual man, ministering to itself and to the world.


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Travis

 2017/9/12 13:38Profile
wijnand
Member



Joined: 2006/3/31
Posts: 115


 Re:

Twayneb, thanks for your reaction. I think that one thing in your message is a little bit confusing. I can be wrong in this, so correct me if this is so.

I see in Ephesians 4 that the five 'gifts to the church' (or: ministries/services) are there for the equiping of the saints so that they can minister to each other. For me this is a big thing. We have the idea that the 'ministers' are the leaders/preachers and they must to the work, the 'ministry'. But I would say that there job is to equip the saints so that they all can do the ministry that God is calling them to do. Every believer should build op the church. And if that happens, then the body will grow to maturity. All the preachers and teachers can't grow up the entire body of Christ.. but if they get the church of Jesus Christ active, then the entire body will be build op and mature :-)


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Wijnand de Ridder

 2017/9/13 2:50Profile
Lysa
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Joined: 2008/10/25
Posts: 3433
This world is not my home anymore.

 Re: Deacons in the Church


Many churches would have a different spirit if they changed the name of the board of deacons to the board of servants.
~ Derek Prince


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Lisa

 2017/9/13 6:26Profile
twayneb
Member



Joined: 2009/4/5
Posts: 2012
Joplin, Missouri

 Re:

Sorry if I was confusing. The five-fold is to equip the body so that the body can do the work of the ministry, building itself up and reaching out to the lost. The body is called to do the work of the ministry. The five-fold is called to equip the body to do that work.


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Travis

 2017/9/13 8:36Profile





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