Saturday, February 04, 2006


An issue that has divided the institutional church is the ordination of homosexual people. Again, we get this wrong, because we ask the wrong question. We should really be asking if it is correct for the church to be ordaining bishops, priests, pastors and ministers. This practice has created a divide between the clergy and the laity that has severely weakened the church. Ordaining ministers cannot be justified from the New Testament, so instead of arguing about whether homosexual and women can be ordained, we should be looking for a leadership model that is true to the scriptures.

The New Testament model is for churches to be led by teams of elders. If a church is really functioning as a body, the elders will emerge from the body. People become elders when others in the church submit to them and follow their example, not when they are appointed to a role. The elders will be the ones looked up to by the other members of the body. Their maturity and love will be evident in their relationships with the rest of the church. Before the church formally sets them aside (this is not necessary) they will have already been accepted as elders by those who relate to them.

Rules about who can be ordained will not guarantee that good people become elders. We have had rules for hundreds of years, but this has not prevented some dreadful people from being ordained. The problem of unsuitable elders should be sorted out within relationships and not according to rules.

The full article on this topic is here

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