Elder Qualifications

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An Elder is a servant leader within the local church body. Elders help bring order and oversight to the local church as they lead under the authority of Christ, care for the body of Christ, and invest fully in the bride of Christ.

Please use these questions for your own self reflection. This is not an exhaustive list but intended to be a starter set of questions in your personal times with God to hear and assess where you are in your own journey and in consideration of the Elder role. Being self-aware is a part of being Sober-minded. Before reading these questions, take a moment to ask God to speak to you through this time.

Biblical Basis for elder qualifications

The statements and questions on this page will refer to these scripture passages:

1 Timothy 3:1-13 (English Standard Version)

The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God's church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

8 Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. 9 They must hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.

Titus 1:5-9 (English Standard Version)

This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you— 6 if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. 7 For an overseer, as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, 8 but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. 9 He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

Within the church

Not a recent convert
Do I have a consistently-disciplined spiritual life? Do I have a good grasp on sound doctrine? (1 Timothy 3:6)

Able to teach
Am I able to clearly communicate the Gospel? Can I teach others about Biblical doctrine? (Titus 1:9)

Internal Character

Do I live a balanced life? Do I have a sound thought process? (1 Timothy 3:2)

Am I able to exercise self-control in my decisions? (1 Tim 3:1-3, Titus 1:8)

Not arrogant
Do I have a genuine humility about my daily interactions and personal mindset? Does my attitude communicate humility? (Titus 1:7)

Lover of good; upright; holy
Do I maintain a high moral standard for my life? Are my decisions and actions ethical? Is personal holiness a prevailing mark of my life? (Titus 1:8)

Am I disciplined in my life and faith? Do I live each day with purpose? (Titus 1:8)

Not a lover of money; greedy for gain
Am I consumed with material goods? Do I have a large amount of debt? Am I greedy?  Do I tithe to my church? (Titus 1:7, 1 Timothy 3:3)

Outward Actions

Above Reproach
Do I have a good reputation in the community? Am I well-respected by those in the church? Are there unrepentant sins in my life? Is my life marked by integrity? (1 Timothy 3:2, Titus1:6, 7)

Must be well thought of by outsiders
Do individuals outside of the church think well of me? (1 Timothy 3:7)

Do those who know me the best love and respect me the most? (1 Timothy 3:2)

Do I keep space in my life to serve others? (1 Timothy 3:2, Titus 1:8)

Not a drunkard
Do I have a substance abuse problem?  (1 Timothy 3:3, Titus 1:7)

Not violent, but gentle and not quarrelsome; Not quick tempered
Am I quick tempered? Do I show restraint when provoked? (1 Timothy 1:3, Titus 1:7)


If married, how is your home in respect to your total faith walk?

Husband of one wife
Do I faithfully honor the covenant of marriage? Is my marriage strong and secure? Are we both serving well within Grace Point? (Titus 3:6, 1 Timothy 3:2)

Must manage his own household well with dignity, keeping his children submissive
Do I lead my own family first? Are my children believers who actively practice their faith? (Titus 1:6, 1 Timothy 3:4)