Our church is an independent, non-denominational congregation focused on equipping believers to accomplish all God has for each individual. We emphasize growing to maturity through regular, relevant study of God’s Word, meaningful corporate worship, and fellowship. Del Rio Bible Church was established in 1997 by a … Read More »
The Proper Exercise of Authority (Part 4)
Bible Text: 1 Peter 5:1-4 | Preacher: Pastor Joe Ricchuiti | Series: 1 Peter, The Proper Exercise of Authority
In a series of three contrasting statements, Peter lays out the nature of New Testament leadership:
1) not because you must but because you are willing;
2) not greedy for money but eager to serve; and
3) not lording it over those entrusted to you but being examples to the flock.
Leaders must serve voluntarily, willingly, not under compulsion. Leaders at times serve for the wrong reason as seen in a statement such as, “If I don’t do it who will?” Sometimes believers are unwilling to serve: out of a false sense of unworthiness; out of reluctance for responsibility; out of a complacency which is content with doing just enough to get by in the spiritual life; or by a sense of being comfortable.
Peter’s second caution is that Elders should not serve out of greed, a wrong view of money. This is an important point for three reasons:
1) some Elders/Pastors/Overseers were paid. While that was not wrong according to scripture such as 1 Tim. 5:17,18 and 1 Cor. 9:3-14, it must not be the sole reason for service;
2) Elders handled money as part of their oversight and must therefore be trustworthy; and
3) Spiritual position can be misused to manipulate people especially about money.
Peter calls leaders to be eager to serve, out of a zeal for God and His work.
In his book Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster lists nine forms of service in chapter nine. The service of:
-hiddenness, “service that remains generally unknown”
-guarding the reputations of others
-being served, accepting service from others without feeling we must pay it back
-common courtesy, such as saying “please,” and “thank you.”
-listening, which requires compassion and patience
-bearing each other’s burdens, Gal. 6:2; James 2:8
-sharing the Word of Life with one-another.