Jay Grimes, Russ Spading, and Scott Sayre will be formally ordained at Grace Community Church on Saturday, April 6th, 2019. We are excited for this ordination, but what does it really mean? Below is an overview of the history, significance, and purpose of ordination.
What is ordination?
In the most basic sense, to ordain means to designate or to appoint. When speaking in regards to a church, to ordain means to designate or appoint as a leader in the church. Modern-day church leadership is given a variety of titles: minister, priest, pastor, elder, bishop, etc. Depending on our background and experiences, we may be familiar with some of these terms. At GCC, we hold that the titles of elder, pastor, and overseer all refer to the same role (see Acts 20:17,28, Titus 1:5-9, and 1 Peter 5:1-4).
What does the New Testament tell us about church leadership?
The New Testament speaks to a number of issues concerning church leadership. Below are GCC's beliefs based on what the Bible teaches on leadership.
God Himself is the one who appoints an elder through the work of the Holy Spirit. (see Acts 20:28)
A core qualification of an elder is godly character, including managing his home well (1 Timothy 3:1-7; Titus 1:5-9) and handling the Word of God with great care (2 Timothy 2:15).
The elders’ responsibilities include directing and managing the church, as well as preaching and teaching the Word of God (1 Timothy 5:17).
The members of the church recognize and embrace God’s appointing of elders.
While there is no command in the Scriptures that a church must have more than one elder, virtually every reference to elders in a local church is plural (e.g., Acts 14:23, 20:28, Philippians 1:1). Wisdom tells us the benefits to having a plurality, such as varied spiritual gifts, more shepherds to care for the flock of God, and being able to watch over their fellow elders’ lives.
For a more expansive look at church leadership, please visit our church leadership page.