Finding Faithful Edlers and Deacons

This is an astounding little book! Everyone in the church would benefit from reading it. Those men who desire to serve or are currently serving in either of the offices of the church will benefit as they gain insight on how to examine themselves and pursue godliness – keeping Christ and His completed work forefront in their lives, for the good of the people they serve. Christians are given insight and questions to ask of men who desire to serve or are currently serving – to help them better understand each man’s qualifications and suitability for service. Easy to read, with 28 short chapters – each full of encouragement to never stop growing in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus.

About the Author

THABITI ANYABWILE is senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Grand Cayman in the Cayman Islands. He served previously as an elder and assistant pastor at Capitol Hill Baptist Church in Washington, DC, and as an elder at Church on the Rock in Raleigh, North Carolina. His other works include What is a Healthy Church Member, The Faithful Pastor, and The Decline of African-American Theology.

13 thoughts on “Finding Faithful Edlers and Deacons

  1. Our church has women serving as elders. 😦 This bothers me as I don’t find it biblical.
    Thank you for the recommendation as it is something that may make a good gift for one the men serving as elders in our church. 🙂


  2. Perhaps a large majority of mainstream Christian “churches” should avail themselves to this book as well. Saddens me greatly to see what passes as an Elder and/or Deacon in today’s evangelical churches.

    Pastors are men who shepherd their local flock.
    Deacons are servants of the local church.

    Choosing each is NOT a responsibility to be taken lightly, or done quickly. As someone who’s been part of churches in the past where the pulpit was “vacant,” it was very disturbing to have the “pulpit committee” bring-in a man for ONE SUNDAY to preach two messages, and then we’d vote on him – whether to “call” him to full-time ministry in OUR local body. It was such a terrible way to install a Pastor to sherherd us.

    Perhaps this author will write something on Finding a Faithful PREACHER as well. Seems like those have become very hard to find as well.



  3. Katy – Many churches are deceived and hard-hearted about the Bible says about elders. I lost my long time best friend by trying to explain to him why women cannot serve as such and why a T.D. Jakes Christmas card he sent me disgusted me. Truth is not always easy to accept, but we must always stand on and under it.

    Todd – all preachers are elders, whether they admit it or not. Several words describe that one office. There are only 2 offices in the church, as you noted. Pastors are elders are preachers are bishops are overseers.


  4. I understand the synonymous relationship between elder, overseer, pastor, etc. Further, there’s really only minor differences in the Scripture when evaluating a man for either the office of Pastor or Deacon.

    I guess I was simply adding an emphasis of my current angst. Having been in Utah for 4 years, and attending a Presbyterian (PCA) church there with a WEAK “heralder,” and in Kansas CIty for a year, and not being able to identify a single, solid preacher in any of the churches I visited, and now in Texas finding pretty much the same thing here, I was just drawing out the fact that just because a man is a Pastor, overseer, Bishop, Elder, doesn’t necessarily mean he’s a good preacher who can exigete a passage in an expositiory fashion, and apply it with passion, and some necessary force (at times) to the hearts and minds of his hearers.


  5. Manfred, I’m with you 100% on elders are pastors are bishops are overseers, and all the Biblical qualifications apply. Preachers? I guess it depends on how you define that. I don’t see anything in Scripture that says you need the same qualifications to be a street preacher, or even to preach on occasion in the church. Could you elaborate?


  6. Todd – amen. Far too many preachers are pretenders.

    Where in the grand state of Texas are you? I am in the swamp known as Houston. I may – but maybe not – be able to help you find a biblical church.


    John, A street preacher is merely an evangelist. He does not hold a church office and is, therefore, not held to the same standards. “Teacher/preacher” is an elder in a church, one who holds the office. The occasional preacher in a church does not need to meet the elder qualifications, but he does need to be able to rightly preach the Word of God.

    Having said that, we all need to be reminded that the personal character traits described for elders and deacons are what every godly man ought to be. Such character is not only for those who hold church offices. The duties differ – not the Christ-like character.


  7. Currently living temporarily in San Marcos, as that is also where I work. I’m planning to move to the San Antonio area though within the next couple months. I’ve visited two decent works in north Austin (HighPointe Baptist), and a Reformed Baptist church. Neither were bad, but wasn’t “wow’d” by either one.

    Have also attended Believer’s Fellowship in SATX, and although a solid, reformed, non-denominational work, the teaching Pastor/Bishop/Shepherd/Elder there is pretty dry as a preacher. Guess I’m seeking someone like Albert N. Martin, if you’re familiar with him.


  8. Todd, Thanks for your reply. My daughter and son-in-law live in San Marcos. I tried to get them to attend and join this small church in Austin: They recently lost one of their elders in a fatal car crash and are slowly recovering.

    I will check on San Antonio and let you know if I find something worthwhile. I encourage you to focus on a church that is satisfied with the Word of God and seeks to exalt Christ in the entire service. I can understand your personal preference (I am familiar with Martin), but hope you do not allow that to distract you from what is good and honorable in God’s sight.

    May our Lord bless you and be your wisdom.


  9. Thank you for taking the time to reply to me, Manfred.

    I’m not sure I see sound Biblical basis for “teacher / preacher” as being equivalent to an elder, or a church office holder. To preach is to proclaim the Gospel, and is something all believers should do. But certainly many do use “preacher” as a title roughly equivalent to pastor. If that is the usage you choose (and it sounds like it is), I agree with you as to qualifications.

    And I also agree entirely that the qualifications are what all Christian men should seek to be.

    Blessings to you.


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