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The office of Elder in the church is foundational to the Biblical government of the church from New Testament times, even finding its beginning in the Old Testament. The right understanding of Eldership and careful practice by those called to this office is therefore vital to the life and growth of our denomination. This guidebook for the Eldership Course has been compiled as an introduction to those called to be shepherding leaders in Christ's Church. The guidebook has been designed to serve multiple purposes. Firstly, it functions as a basic primer to orient you to the office of Eldership. You will see various sections here on the Biblical foundations of Eldership, a quick summary of it's history in the life of the church, a section on Polity -the rules and regulations of Eldership as it is practiced in the PCEA, and then Practice - the work of the Elder in the day-to-day life of the church- putting all the theory found at the beginning of the book to use. The guidebook finishes with a section on the Spiritual Development of the Elder - this is perhaps the most important section. The faith and life of the Elder must be exemplary and an encouragement to others to seek to be more and more conformed to Christ. If the Elder's walk after and with His Lord has stagnated, then how can he be effective in helping those under his care to grow in Christ? Secondly, the guidebook functions as a starting point to search out other resources to aid in your development. In addition to the references to books and articles within the text, and at the end in the Bibliography, a pool of links and online resources will hopefully grow on the church website. The guidebook you have here, on your screen or on paper in your hands, is only a primer, an ABC of the Eldership. The desire of all of us involved in its compilation is to encourage you to delve into the depths of what it means to serve Christ and his Church and find a fuller understanding of the vocation which, in turn will lead (we pray) to new or renewed efforts to labour in the Lord's vineyard to His glory.
Principles of Spiritual Development
The History of our denomination... Now available f...