Responsibility

  1. To submit to those whom the follower chooses
    • References
      • Hebrews 13:17 Obey your leaders and submit to them for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account.  Let them do so with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.
      • Hebrews 13:7 Remember those who led you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct.
      • 1 Thessalonians 5:12 – 13 And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them highly in love for their work’s sake.
      • Ephesians 5:21 Submitting to one another in the fear of Christ.
    • Observations
      • Leaders have no authority or enforcement abilities given in the Scriptures
      • Leaders will not have input as to who will be saved. Followers are responsible for their choices of leaders
      • The choice of a leader is likely to change from time to time, based solely on the perceptions and conclusions of the follower.
      • The fact that the church exists implies that each Christian should acknowledge someone as his or her leader.
      • Different people will look to different leaders, even in the same congregation, but that is a reasonable result (1 Corinthians 3) so long as the choices are not in the spirit of division (1 Corinthians 1:10 – 17).
  2. To mature
    • References
      • Colossians 1:9 – 12 For this reason we also, since the day we heard of it, do not cease to pray for you and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering and joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light.
      • 2 Corinthians 3:15 – 18 …But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.
      • 1 Peter 2:2 As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, up to salvation
      • 2 Peter 3:18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
      • Ephesians 4:15 – 16 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head – Christ – from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causing the growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.
      • 1 Corinthians 12:12 – 31 (Description of diversity in the church, but that all are equally important).
    • Observations
      • Maturity is not optional
      • The Spirit transforms us, if we allow it.
      • The functions in the church into which we mature are different but equally important
  3. To teach believers and unbelievers
    • References
      • Hebrews 5:12 – 14 For by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food.  For everyone who partakes only of milk is unskilled in the word of righteousness, for he is a babe.  But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
      • 2 Timothy 2:24 – 25 And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance so that they may know the truth…
      • 2 Corinthians 4 – 5 (We all have this ministry…Knowing the fear of the Lord, we persuade men…We are ambassadors for Christ).
      • Titus 2:3 – 5 The older women, likewise…admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God not be blasphemed
      • 2 Timothy 2:2 …Commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
      • 1 Corinthians 3:10 – 15 Let each one take heed how he builds…If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward.  If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved.
      • Matthew 13:23 But he who received the seed on the good ground is he who hears and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and produces, some a hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.
    • Observations
      • Sharing what we know about Jesus is an expression of love
      • Teaching takes many forms but all forms imply speaking and must produce fruit
      • Avoid speculation and complication (1 Timothy 1:3 – 11, 6:4, 6:20, 2 Timothy 2:16, 4:4, Titus 3:9)