The Churchly Authority of the Office of Deacon: Part 1 – Acts 6, Elders, and Deacons

The Aquila Report | 5/2/2019 | Staff
marika (Posted by) Level 3
The churchly authority of the office of deacon is a specific subset of the churchly authority of the office of elder. We have now the first piece of the puzzle for us to begin to see how, contrary to many arguments which have tried to evacuate the office of deacon of any sort of authority in the church, the office of deacon does indeed have a specific kind of authority in the church. That authority certainly does not completely overlap with the all the various kinds of authoritative church powers which belong to the office of elders, and it is an authority exercised in submission to the authority of the oversight of elders.

If we are to arrive at any satisfactory conclusions about the question of the ordination of deaconesses and its theological merits it is not sufficient for the discussion to remain at the level of exploring the exegetical ambiguities of two Greek words (γυναῖκας in 1 Timothy 3:11 and διάκονον in Romans 16:1). Certainly, this exegetical data must be studied and incorporated into the larger ecclesiological treatment of the question and there have been many such studies. However, for the church to arrive at any substantive conclusions about the doctrinal question of the office of deaconess something more is requisite than a narrow treatment of these two passages. This is apparent, especially among complementarian strands of the modern Presbyterian tradition.[1] Committed complementarians who wish to affirm the doctrinal soundness of ordaining deaconesses in parity with male deacons invariably must also engage the question of the authority of the office of deacon. In order to maintain an unequivocal complementarianism in their ecclesiology, such proponents must evacuate the office of deacon of the sort of ecclesial authority which would conflict with Paul’s prohibitions in 1 Timothy 2:11-12.[2] The question of the...
(Excerpt) Read more at: The Aquila Report
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