The Care Administered To The Church
||Rev. Ronald Van Overloop
(New Year's Day)
||132, 342, 126, 242
|Installation of Elders and Deacons
- Those who are to be cared for are called ?the flock? and the ?church of God.?
- Church means ?called out ones? and refers here to the local congregation of Christians at Ephesus.
- Identified as ?the flock? the Christians are looked at as sheep.
- They are considered as an organic whole (singular nouns) made up of many different parts.
- Further, the church and flock is that ?which He hath purchased with His own blood.? This is its great value.
- ?Purchased? is the act of God obtaining the body of the elect for Himself. Two implications:
- The price God Himself paid was ?His own blood.?
- The care to be administered to the church and flock of God.
- First, ?feed? is to tend a flock, to keep sheep, to rule or govern them.
- The calling of elders is to shepherd, tend to by nourishing, cherishing, and protecting.
- It means to guard their souls in safety.
- This requires that the sheep be led in the right way so they are nourished.
- Second, ?take heed? is to turn the mind to be attentive to, to devote attention and effort to someone.
- This is a constant vigilance, almost sleepless alertness.
- Only love for God and Jesus will give us to such loving attention for the flock.
- By whom is this care to be administered:
- The Head of the church appoints ?elders? (Acts 20:17), i.e., presbyters, seniors in rank.
- ?Overseers? (episcopos).
- They are charged with the duty of seeing that things to be done by others are done rightly.
- Our text points out that they are made to be overseers by the appointment of the Holy Spirit.
- This implies the sacredness and the responsibility of the offices.