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9Marks Explained : A Letter From Mark Dever
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Leadership

What is it?

The Bible teaches that each local church should be led by a plurality of godly, qualified men called elders.

Where is it in the Bible?

Paul lays out the qualifications for elders in 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9. Passages that evidence a plurality of elders in one local church include Acts 14:23, Acts 20:17, 1 Timothy 4:14, 1 Timothy 5:17, and James 5:14.

Why is it important?

God gifts churches with elders to

  • feed God’s sheep God’s word (Jn. 21:15-17),
  • guide the sheep (1 Tim. 4:16; 1 Pet. 5:3, Heb. 13:7),
  • and protect the sheep from attackers (Acts 20:27-29; 2 Tim. 4:3-4; Tit. 1:9),
  • while protecting both themselves and the church through the wisdom of their plurality (Prov. 11:14; 24:6).

The bottom line? Biblical church leadership is important because without it, God’s people are like sheep without shepherds.