Church Government
The Lexham Bible Dictionary
Early Church Governance
Early Church Governance Details the structure of the early church, based on what can be observed in the New Testament and the earliest Christian literature.
The New Bible Dictionary, Third Edition
Church Government
CHURCH GOVERNMENT. The NT provides no detailed code of regulations for the government of the church, and the very idea of such a code might seem repugnant to the liberty of the gospel dispensation; but Christ left behind him a body of leaders in the apostles whom he himself had chosen, and he also gave
Dictionary of Paul and His Letters
Church Order and Government
Church order and governmentDuring the last half-century Paul’s teaching and practice regarding how the Christian communities were ordered and led has undergone frequent investigation. (1) Exegetical work on Paul has rediscovered the charismatic dimension in Paul’s approach to church order, developed
Dictionary of the Later New Testament & Its Developments
Church Order, Government
Church Order, GovernmentHow the earliest Christians organized their communal life, who provided the leadership, and the relationship between the whole community of Christians and local congregations has been for centuries a topic of debate. Many issues, however, have become clearer in recent times because
Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary
Church Government
CHURCH GOVERNMENT — the organizational pattern by which a church governs itself. At first, church organization and government in the New Testament was flexible to meet changing needs. But as the church became better established, it gave attention to the right structures and procedures that would help
International Standard Bible Encyclopedia
CHURCH GOVERNMENT<guv’-ern-ment>:The object here sought is to discover what kind of church government is mirrored in the New Testament. To do this with perfect definiteness is, no doubt, quite impossible. Certain general features, however, may clearly be seen.
The Lutheran Cyclopedia
Church Polity
Church Polity is that branch of theological science that treats of the principles of church government. The Church is a divinely-instituted society for the administration of the Word and sacraments. As a society it has had to provide rules and regulations, in which the relations of its members to each
Kirchen-Ordnung (K. O.; Church Orders), the regulations and directions for the government of the Church, the instruction of the young, the order of service, the maintenance of discipline, etc., published in the Reformationera. As a rule these orders, in their various provisions, cover the whole life
Pocket Dictionary of Church History: Over 300 Terms Clearly and Concisely Defined
Episcopal Church Government
episcopal church government. The traditional rule of bishops in the church is called episcopal after the Greek term for “bishop,” episcopos. In this form of governance, the bishop oversees all local churches, priests, presbyters, *deacons, etc. in his diocese or episcopal see. This is the government
Presbyterian Church Government
presbyterian church government. One of the three major forms of Protestant polity, the term presbyterian is almost a direct transliteration of the Greek word for “elder,” presbyteros. Presbyterian ecclesiology is a rule by elders who are elected by vote of the congregation. Rooted in the theology of
Pocket Dictionary of the Reformed Tradition
Polity, Church
polity, church. The structure of church government. Three main forms of polity arose out of the Reformation: *Presbyterianism, *Episcopalianism and *Congregationalism. In Presbyterian polity, which is most common in the Reformed tradition, ruling elders are elected by the congregation and teaching elders
Dictionary of Theological Terms
Regulative Principle
Regulative PrincipleThe theory of church government and worship that stipulates that not only church doctrine but also church practice, must be based on clear scriptural warrant. That is, we must have a clear Biblical command or precedent, expressed or implied, for all we introduce into the work and
The Government of the Church
The Government of the ChurchExtremely different views—varying from the professed absence of any form of church government among groups like the Quakers to the hierarchical notions of the church of Rome—have been voiced on this subject. Erastianism* cedes church government to the state. Episcopacy* holds
Key passages
Ac 14:23

And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, after praying with fasting, they entrusted them to the Lord, in whom they had believed.

1 Th 5:12–13

Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and rule over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them beyond all measure in love, because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves.

Tt 1:5

On account of this, I left you behind in Crete, in order that what remains may be set in order and you may appoint elders in every town, as I ordered you.

See also
Topics & Themes