Summary: Paul gives instructions about elders and then various or sundry exhortations on several subjects. 1- Consider elders as worthy 2- Partake not in the sins of others 3- Remember the judgment
INTRO.- What’s the difference between Sunday and sundry? A change of letters. But what’s the real difference?
Sunday is important to the Christian because it’s considered in scripture as the first day of the week, resurrection day and the day the early Christians partook of the Lord’s Day. (Acts 20:7) Sunday should always be important to the Christian for that reason, that is, for remembering the Lord at His table, for giving Him praise and thanks, for worshiping Him.
Hebrews 10:25 Forsake not the assembling of ourselves together or the NIV, “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
ILL.- What do baby boomers expect to see in a church? Answer: High-quality preaching, good music and social groups, says Lyle E. Schaller, an Illinois religious consultant. Baby boomers also expect big meeting rooms, a quality kitchen, child care, ample parking, and clean rest rooms.
Hey, I think we’ve got all or most of these. People need to come to our church!
Sundry means various as in: “I must pick up some sundry and various items at the Dollar store.”
Just as we need sundry and various items from the store, we also need sundry and various exhortations at times from God’s Word. We just need to read them, think about them, pay attention to them, and obey them as best we can. Even though we’re not under law but under grace we still need to obey God’s love letter as best we can. He gives us His Word for our direction in life and for our good.
Psalm 119:105 “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.”
Psalm 119:9-11 “How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your word. I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.”
PROP.- Paul gives instructions about elders and then various or sundry exhortations on several subjects.
1- Consider elders as worthy
2- Partake not in the sins of others
3- Remember the judgment
I. CONSIDER ELDERS AS WORTHY
17The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching. 18For the Scripture says, "Do not muzzle the ox while it is treading out the grain," and "The worker deserves his wages." 19Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses. 20Those who sin are to be rebuked publicly, so that the others may take warning.
Where did I get this idea of “Sunday elders”? Are there Sunday elders and every day elders? Yes, in a sense. The term “elder” refers to an elderly man and there are many elderly men in this world but not all elderly men are elders (or perhaps Sunday elders) in the church.
Elders who direct the affairs of the church are worthy. Elders should work, direct, and serve in the church. If they are elders in name only then perhaps they shouldn’t be elders.
ILL.- Longtime Dean of Ozark Christian College, Seth Wilson, once said, “Elders are servants of servants in a serving brotherhood of love.” In other words, church elders must serve, work, direct, lead, guide, guard, etc.
Hebrews 13:7-8 “Remember your leaders, who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”
Remember your leaders who spoke the Word of God to you. Does this mean that elders should be teachers of the Word? I would assume so. They should at least know the Word well enough to teach. They might not be expert at their delivery, however, but no preacher is either!
True Sunday elders should teach the Word of God and live out the Word in daily living. Consequently, we should imitate their faith.
I Thessalonians 5:12-13 “Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.”
Sunday elders should be respected for their work and service for the Lord. Often in churches they are not respected, only criticized. Some criticism may be fair but some is definitely unjust because church members often do not know what goes on “behind the scenes” in the working of the church.
Sunday elders should be working and serving elders. But there are elderly men in our world and even in our churches who do little in regard to serving the Lord or serving others.