Why should we have multiple elders?

Biblical EldershipBiblical Eldership by Alexander Strauch

This book is a great explanation of why multiple elders are the biblical model of the church. There are a few things the author is too adamant on that are more informed by tradition than Scripture, but on the whole it is a sound corrective to the out of control congregational polity many churches practice today.

The first portion is topical and informs you of the type of leadership Scripture calls for in an elder. The rest of the book is biblical exegesis of the New Testament passages that refer to elders. The writing is clear and to the point without being dry. If you want to know why churches should have multiple elders, read the book.

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  1. Glenn Schreiber says:

    Greetings, Matt —
    It is good to see your review of “Biblical Eldership” here. I was given a copy of the book about 20 years ago before it became popular, and when it was in its first edition (see “revised and expanded” on the front cover).

    I’m wondering what in particular you are referring to when you say:

    “There are a few things the author is too adamant on that are more informed by tradition than Scripture …”

    I’ll look forward to reading your reply as you are able.

    Grace to you,

  2. Bro. Glenn,

    I’m sorry this has taken so long to reply to. I haven’t re-read the book so I am going from memory but the best example that illustrates what I was saying was Strauch’s take on Acts 15. As I remember he said that the pronouncement of the elders and apostles at Jerusalem was not binding on other churches. I don’t see any other way of viewing it than as binding on all churches. This is Strauch reading Baptist tradition into the text rather than allowing the text to stand on its own. I also see there being more hierarchy in the N.T. church than he does. For example, I understand Paul commissioning Titus to ordain elders in the role of something like a bishop or elder of elders. I know this is a matter of different ecclesiology but it seems like the case nonetheless. I don’t see there being one sole method of church leadership mandated. If the men are prepared, I support multiple elders. If not, it might be necessary for one man to lead but this is not the most desirable alternative. I am in strong agreement with the author on the need for biblical eldership as the Scripture teaches; this post was just to express that I didn’t agree with everything he said.

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