Volume. XVIII, No. 48
Sunday, 30 May 2004

From the pastors heart: the upcoming election at ACM

As you know, in every three years we elect new sessions. This is the year of election. I have been hoping to have an elder, and, of course, unless God allows us to have one, my wish may have to wait for some more time to see its fulfillment. However, sooner or later the congregation needs to nominate deacons. Therefore, it is beneficial for all of us to be reminded of the qualifications of elders and deacons.


For elders

  • He desires a good work. It must show his character. He must be a good person who desires good works.
  • He must be blameless.
  • He is to be a husband of one wife. Divorced man should not be considered to be appointed as an elder.
  • He must be vigilant, sober, and of good behaviour.
  • He is to be hospitable. It is a very practical consideration to choose a man of hospitality because there are always visitors and people whom the church needs to look after. It requires dedication and willingness to serve on the part of elders.
  • He is apt to teach.
  • He is not given to wine.
  • He must neither be a striker nor greedy of filthy lucre.
  • He must be patient.
  • He must be neither a brawler nor covetous. It seems that he is a natural giver.
  • He must rule his children well in the Lord. Children need to learn from his examples and abide in the Lord.
  • He must not be a novice. He must have proven his faith and character.
  • He must have a good report from the people without. It is very meaningful that his reputation does not come just from insiders of the church but from the outsiders.

For deacons

  • He must be grave.
  • He must not be a doubletongued.
  • He must not be given to much wine.
  • He must not be greedy of filthy lucre.
  • He must have the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.
  • He must be found blameless.
  • If we see Acts 6, deacons are eager to share God’s Word with others and to be filled with the Spirit of God. They have good testimonies, too.

Practical suggestions
Having known of all these qualifications, we want to know more about practical guides and how these qualifications are applied to individuals. Verse 15 in the same chapter says, “15 But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” Paul advised Timothy that he needed to know how he ought to behave himself in the church. Elder’s or deacon’s behaviors will be reflections of their qualifications. They must know how to behave themselves in the church of God. They are not the masters of the church, but servants. They are assistants to their pastor as Acts 6 indicates. By looking after the affairs in the church, they relieve the burdens of their pastor’s work which can be distractions from his study of the Word and prayer life. They, of course, should be godly examples to other believers. Thus, they ought to be diligent to attend at all services including Sunday and Wednesday services, and all church activities. Their giving also should be exemplary. Giving is something that they can demonstrate their faithfulness and commitment to the Lord in private. However, it is not too much to say that they are givers of tithes and thanksgiving offerings. They must be concerned about weak ones in the church both physical and spiritual. They are the students of God’s Word as well. Hospitality is something that I want to stress on. Service for the Lord often requires of their sacrifice and dedication. To be hospitable, they should be able to put their duty before God over any other priorities.

Heart attitude
If a man feels that he is well qualified to be a deacon or an elder, probably he is not really ready for the church office. When a man is called by God, it seems that there is always a sense of inadequacy in himself. But, he believes in God and obeys His calling. Then, God moulds the man and grants him His enabling grace. Isaiah found his inadequacy before the holiness of God, but he answered to God’s calling by saying, “Here am I. Send me.” Amos said that he was only a fig gatherer and shepherd. But, God called him and enabled him even to face the king of Israel. The most important spirit as a deacon or an elder is the spirit of obedience. Like a colt, a young ass, used by the Lord when He entered into Jerusalem, we ought to be ready to be used when He says, “The Lord hath need of him” (Luke 19:31). Why does any one need to be willing to serve as a deacon or an elder? It is because the Lord has need of him. It is an honor. It is a privilege. Therefore, what he needs to look into is a matter that the Lord needs of him. Then, “to trust” and “to obey” to God are two edged sword he must have. Opportunities are not available for ever. We’ll add a few things to our constitution in near future. One of them is of a retirement age of all church officers including pastor. It will be decided between 63 and 65. We’ll think about it some more. However, this change will inevitably give us some somber thoughts that there will be limited times when we can serve the Lord as church officers. Of course, we can serve Him till we die. However, church office will have age restrictions at Hope. Before the days are too late, be willing to serve Him as deacons and elders. Hope church needs devoted elders and deacons now. Do not delay your service.

Let us pray hard that the Lord would grant us right people to serve in the Session. May the Lord bless us as we pray!

Your Pastor

More Lively Hope



Shorter Catechism Question No. 51: What is forbidden in the second commandment? The second commandment forbiddeth the worshipping of God by images, or any other way not appointed in his word.

Please continue to pray for Sis. Myung Ki, Rev. Peter Clements, Bro. Surish Dharmalingam, Sis Susan Varadi, Sis. Aranka Rejtoe, Sis. Irene Turner and Life Bible School (Kompong-som). “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” Matthew 11:28

Praise and Thank God for granting journey mercies to Rev. Peter Chua who arrived from Singapore to minister to us over the next week.

Thank God for granting journey mercies to Bro. David Yeo, Sisters Sooi Chin and Joyce Gong (Adelaide), and Sis. Josephine Lee (Perth)

Please pray for journey mercies for Bro. Gabriel Lee, and Sisters Grace Lee, Wendy Gong and Josephine Lee (Adelaide).

Praise and Thank God for all those who helped in the Working Bee yesterday. May the Lord bless you richly in your service for Him.

Cambodia Missions - Anyone planning to go to Cambodia, 10-31 Jan 2005, please see Ps Ki or Dn Michael D Lee ASAP.

Please note: The next term of BBK Classes will commence today.

Hope B-P Church 18th Anniversary Service will be held next Sunday (6 June 2004). Our Guest Speaker will be Rev. Peter Chua. Please invite your friends to come.

Hospitality: Please fill in your names in the sheet on the foyer table if you would be willing to have Rev Chua for lunch/dinner during his stay in Adelaide.

Looking Ahead: YAF Retreat from 9-11 July 2004. Venue: Boomer Beach. Please keep these dates free.



© Hope Bible-Presbyterian Church
14 Bedford Square, Colonel Light Gardens, South Australia 5041