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    Church Government

    Home · About · What We Believe · Church Government Harvest is committed to the Bible's teaching that men who hold the offices of Elder and Deacon are to oversee various functions of the local church.

    The Bible's teaching on the subject of two church offices is found in 1 Timothy 3:1-16 and Titus 1:5-9. Although there are three terms used for the offices of the church: bishop, elder, and deacon, analysis of these terms indicates that bishop and elder are used interchangeably.

    Elder Qualifications

    (Titus 1:6-9)
    • Above reproach
    • Able to teach
    • Husband to one wife
    • Not addicted to wine
    • Temperate
    • Not antagonistic
    • Prudent
    • Uncontentious
    • Respectable
    • Free from the love of money
    • Hospitable
    • Manage own household
    • Not a new convert

    Elder Duties

    The Scriptures show that the elders serve by leading and that their responsibility involves the spiritual oversight of the congregation. All elders are equal in authority but not necessarily equal in influence.

    The elders' primary responsibilities include:
    • Doctrine - Ensuring that the doctrine of the church is biblical; all doctrinal issues in the church will be settled by the Board of Elders.
    • Direction - Ensuring that the direction of the church is consistent with the Harvest Bible Chapel statement of purpose and the Four Pillars.
    • Discipline - Administering in love and humility the process of church discipline as outlined in Matthew 18:15-20; Galatians 6:1-4; Titus 3:10; 2 Thessalonians 3:14-15; 1 Timothy 5:17-25; 1 Corinthians 5; 2 Corinthians 2:5-11, and Romans 16:17.

    Plurality of Elders

    The Scriptures teach that a plurality of elders governed individual New Testament churches (Acts 14:23; Acts 20:28; Titus 1:5; Philippians 1:1). The Scripture does not mention any congregations featuring a stand-alone pastor and leader. A plurality of godly elders, exercising their individual giftedness, squares with the Scripture's teaching that wisdom is found in a multitude of godly counselors (Proverbs 11:14; Proverbs 12:15; Proverbs 15:22; Proverbs 19:20; Proverbs 24:6). This truth does not eliminate the possibility and likelihood that one or more elders will stand out from the others as more public in their ministries or more influential in their workings on the Elder Board.

    Senior Pastor

    The Harvest Bible Chapel Senior Pastor automatically serves as an elder and, because of his public presence and responsibility before the congregation, may be considered first among equals as a member of the Elder Board. The Senior Pastor should be gifted primarily as a preacher/teacher and as a leader.

    Deacons

    The Bible teaches that deacons lead by serving (Acts 6). The qualifications for elders and deacons are the same regarding an individual's character, but they differ in aptitude. The elders are to be able to teach while the deacons are to be able and proved as servants.

    Deacon Qualifications

    (1 Timothy 3:8-12)
    • Individual of dignity
    • Above reproach
    • Not double tongued
    • First tested as servants
    • Not addicted to wine
    • Spouses must be faithful
    • Temperate
    • Not fond of sordid gain
    • Holding to the mystery of faith with a clear conscience
    • Husband of one wife
    • Manages household well


    Upcoming Events

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    TueTuesdayMarMarch3rd2015 Financial Peace University | Rolling Meadows 03/03/2015
    Rolling Meadows
    A life-changing class that will teach you how to take control of your finances God's way. Facilitated by Harvest Bible Chapel and using Dave Ramsey's video series, it will put you on the road to true... More
    WedWednesdayMarMarch4th2015 Women's Campus Group, Niles 03/04/2015
    Niles
    Nehemiah: A Heart That Can Break Join us for an 8 week study starting Wednesday, January 28
    WedWednesdayMarMarch4th2015 Financial Peace University | Aurora 03/04/2015
    Aurora
    A life-changing class on how to take control of your finances God's way. Facilitated by Harvest Bible Chapel and using Dave Ramsey's video series, it will put you on the road to true financial peace.... More
    WedWednesdayMarMarch4th2015 Awana | Aurora 03/04/2015
    Aurora
    Awana is happening this Wednesday. Common Questions about Awana When Does Awana Meet? Wednesday nights at Harvest Bible Chapel Aurora beginning September 10 from 6:00–8:00 PM Who is Awana For?... More
    WedWednesdayMarMarch4th2015 Women's Campus Groups, Wednesdays, Elgin 03/04/2015
    Elgin
    Come discover life-giving treasures that can only be found in God, through His Word and through His people. Tracks offered on Wednesday nights, 6:30-8:00 P.M. Trek Through the Bible Strengthening... More
    WedWednesdayMarMarch4th2015 Awana | Niles, Chicago Cathedral, North Shore 03/04/2015
    NilesChicago CathedralNorth Shore
    Come be part of this great ministry for children on Wednesdays! Register for this weekly event! Common Questions about Awana When Does Awana Meet? Wednesday nights at Harvest Bible Chapel, Niles... More