I Peter 2:2  "as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby"

Lessons designed to promote the first principles of the oracles of God!

"Written By: David Hicks                                   New King James Version


Lesson 1: "The Organization of the Church"

I.  Purpose.
a.  To set forth a general picture of church organization in the New Testament.
b.  To correct any misconceptions new members might have about such organization.
c.  To enable new Christians to see where they fit into the organization of the local congregation and what their responsibilities are in that organization.
d.  To set forth duties of elders, preachers, deacons and teachers and show the relationship of the new Christian to each.


II.  Need for the Organization in Every Field.
a.  No government can stand, function, and carry on its work without some organization.

 i. If the organization of the United States government were suddenly destroyed, the result would be chaos.

b.  Success in business, in the armed forces, in schools, depends upon an efficient and well planned organization.
c.  The organization of the church designed and planned by divine wisdom (Ephesians 3:10-11 “to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord,”).


d.  Church government diagramed (See chart attached to this course).

 i. Points to be stressed.
1)  Authority of each.
2)  Work of each.
3)  Key to each.

a.  Designation given.

b.  The work assigned.

c.  Examples of work done.

 ii. Terms “Christ,” “Lord,” “King,” all emphasize authority and work of Jesus the Son of God.

 iii. Terms relative to Eldership .

1) Elder (‘Presbytros' ) = older, experienced.
2) Bishop (‘Episcopos' ) = overseer, superintendent.
3) Pastor (‘poimeen' ) = shepherd, herdsman.
4) Ruler (‘Hegoumenoi' ) = leader.
5) Ensample (‘Tupos' ) model, pattern.

6) Steward (‘Oikonomous') = manager, caretaker, administrator.

 iv. Terms relative to Preachers or Evangelists.

1) Evangelist (‘Evangelistes') = bearer of good tidings.
2) Preacher (‘Kerux' ) = herald, proclaimed of the truth.

 v. Terms relative to Deacons.

1) Deacon (‘Diakonos' ) = servant, or one who ministers.

2) Special service under direction of elders.

 vi. Terms relative to Members:

1) Saints = sanctified, set apart.
2) Disciples = learner.
3) Child of God = in Gods family.
4) Brethren = relation to others in the family.

5) Christian = belonging or pertaining to Christ.

 vii. Most departures from the truth have begun with a corruption of the organization and rebellion against authority.

1)  Elders assuming Christ's authority – legislative decrees
2)  Preachers assuming Elders' authority – modern “Pastor” system.
3)  Deacons assuming Elders' authority - the “Church Board”.

4)  Members assuming Elders' authority - the “Majority Rule”.

a.  What's wrong with the “Majority Rule”?

 i. The church is a monarchy not a democracy.
 ii. Makes no distinction as to age and spiritual maturity of members.

(Hebrews 5:12-14 "For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe. 14 But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.)

 iii. Makes Elders subject to the church, rather than the reverse.

( Hebrews 13:17 “Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account. Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.”)

 iv. Creates division.

( 1 Corinthians 1:10 “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.”)


III.  Our Duties to the Elders.
a.  Know and respect them.

(1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 “And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, 13 and to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. Be at peace among yourselves.”)

b.  Be subject to and obey them.

(1 Peter 5:5 “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.” ; see also: Hebrews 13:17)

 i. The meaning of subjection: Subjection comes from a Greek word that has its roots in the concept of military rank; “to rank under”. It describes the concept of being subject to a greater source of authority.

c.  Receive not an unsupported accusation against them.

(1 Timothy 5:19 “Do not receive an accusation against an elder except from two or three witnesses.”)

d.  Support them (1 Timothy 5:17).
e.  Call upon them and use them when in spiritual need.

( James 5:14 “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.”)


IV.  Our Duties to the Congregation.
a.  The key to success of any congregation is a real sense of individual responsibility.

( Ephesians 4:16 “from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”)

 i. Every; member working.

1)  Illustrated by members of the body (read: 1 Corinthians 12:12-27).

2)  Illustrated by soldiers of an army (read; Ephesians 6:11-13).

3)  Illustrated by partners in a fellowship (read: Acts 2:42; 1 John 1:3).