More on Husbands, Elders, Overseers, Bishops, and Deacons

Now that we have talked about wives submitting to their husbands, we need to cover how husbands are to love their wives. 

A Word to Husbands

1 Peter 3

Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and asbeing heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.

Ephesians 5

25 Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, 27 that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. 28 So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. 30 For we are members of His body,[d] of His flesh and of His bones. 31 “For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”[e] 32 This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church. 33 Nevertheless let each one of you in particular so love his own wife as himself, and let the wife see that she respects her husband.

Husbands, you are to be understanding of your wife, know her hopes, dreams, desires, and goals.   Love your wive as Christ loved the church. That is He laid down His own life and suffered  for the church.  I think, husbands,ladies correct me if I am wrong here,  that if you love your wive in this manner that there would be no question of having her respect and her loving and voluntary submission to your leadership. Now we leave leadership in the home and come to leadership in the church.  The titles we see here are elder, bishop and overseer, theses titles are used interchangeably in the New Testament for the same office- that one of which we use pastor for today. We come to the final chapter of this epistle.

1 Peter 5

New King James Version (NKJV)

Shepherd the Flock

The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly,[a] not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away.

Submit to God, Resist the Devil

Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for

“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”[b]

Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.

Be sober, be vigilant; because[c] your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. 10 But may[d] the God of all grace, who called us[e] to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. 11 To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Farewell and Peace

12 By Silvanus, our faithful brother as I consider him, I have written to you briefly, exhorting and testifying that this is the true grace of God in which you stand.

13 She who is in Babylon, elect together with you, greets you; and so does Mark my son. 14 Greet one another with a kiss of love.

Peace to you all who are in Christ Jesus. Amen.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Peter 5:2 NU-Text adds according to God.
  2. 1 Peter 5:5 Proverbs 3:34
  3. 1 Peter 5:8 NU-Text and M-Text omit because.
  4. 1 Peter 5:10 NU-Text reads But the God of all grace . . . will perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.
  5. 1 Peter 5:10 NU-Text and M-Text read you.
Peter identifies himself as a fellow elder. Peter was an eyewitness to Christs suffering. When Peter uses the term partaker here he is referring to sharing the reign  in Christ’s  coming kingdom and that he was already experiencing the glory now in part that will be revealed fully one day. As all believers will.  
The word pastor comes from the word shepherd and a shepherd leads the sheep by going in front of them, he does not drive them from behind.Church leaders are to lead in the same way, the role of the pastor is:

1. To pastor or “sheperd” God’s church-feed, lead, guide, and nuture

2. to administrate or rule God’s church

3. to teach and to preach

4. to represent the church

5. to pray for the sick

I come from a background of the independent Christian Churches where the Pastors considered themselves as paid elders. Each church was independent from one another and there was no central or denominational headquarters. There was a board of elders- elected by the congregation and a board of Deacons also chosen by the congregation.  The elders on the board had the same duties as the Pastor- remember the terms bishop, elder, and overseer are all titles for the office. The elder is responsible for the spiritual needs of the church. The Deacons are responsible for the physical needs of the church. In Acts 6 we find the appointment of the first Deacons.  

Acts 6

New King James Version (NKJV)

Seven Chosen to Serve

6 Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, there arose a complaint against the Hebrews by the Hellenists,[a] because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. Then the twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said, “It is not desirable that we should leave the word of God and serve tables.Therefore, brethren, seek out from among you seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business; but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”

And the saying pleased the whole multitude. And they chose Stephen, a man full of faith and the Holy Spirit, and Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas, a proselyte from Antioch, whom they set before the apostles; and when they had prayed, they laid hands on them.

Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests were obedient to the faith.

We will leave of here and pick up the rest of Chapter five next time!  

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