1 Peter 5:1-14 Church Leadership
There are two parts to Church Leadership:
Submissive Service (1 Peter 5:1-7)
Spiritual Warfare (1 Peter 5:8-14)
Let’s address the first part. Submissive service is the way in which church leadership operates. At the same time, the passage is very clear about the functions of leadership. Three words are used in 1 Peter 5:1-3) to reveal about the functions of leadership. They all involve oversight and direction:
“Therefore, as a fellow elder and witness to the sufferings of the Messiah and also a participant in the glory about to be revealed, I exhort the elders among you:” (1 Peter 5:1, HCSB)
“Elder” – the Greek noun is “presbyteros” where we get our word “Presbyterian.” The elder is the appointed and elected leader of the church. The Greek literally means to be an old man or an elder. The word is male and that is one reason why pastors need to be male. There are no female elders. There is debate about female deacons or deacons’ wives functioning as a servant. However, the pastor – the elder – is always male.“Shepherd God’s flock among you, not overseeing out of compulsion but freely, according to God’s will; not for the money but eagerly;” (1 Peter 5:2, HCSB)
“Shepherd” – in this case is the Greek verb “poimanate” from the word “poimain” which is where we get our word “Pastor.” The idea is that the shepherd rules over the the sheep and the goats. The sense in the Greek is to guide, to help, to rule.
In the same verse, we have another word:
“Oversee” – in this case, it is the verb form of the Greek word “episkopeo” to over-see, or to super-vise. The word means to watch over, to direct, to care, and to be accountable for an assembly of believers. The Greek literally means to care for, guard against, and minister to.
Three words which describe the functions of leadership in the church.