Wed, 14 Apr 2010 - 4:05 PM CST
Michael D. Messner
Today’s office of church administrator was born in the New Testament and arose from a need to solve the murmurings of the Early Church members. Even though the apostles were preaching, disciples were multiplying, and the church was growing, human needs were being neglected (Acts 6). The reason: Too few were sharing the administrative load.
A similar situation faced Moses (Exodus 18) when he tried to judge and solve the problems of his flock by himself. Both biblical situations reflect similar problems and solutions. Their solution can be applied to today’s fast-growing churches.
In Acts a proposal was put into action. Seven men of good reputation, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom, were chosen to deal with what we would call administrative tasks. Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, was chosen along with six others.
What can we learn from this action? Administrators are to be considered, first and foremost, spiritual men. They must maintain that witness in both their personal lives and ministries.
Before any administrative work began, the seven were presented to the apostles who prayed and laid hands on them. Through this act, the church recognized these chosen men as having God-given and apostle-given offices within the body.
By sharing the administrative load of the church, the end result was twofold: (1) The church was able to prosper and accomplish even more for the Lord and His purposes. The Word of God spread, and a large number of priests became obedient to the faith (Acts 6:7). (2) The apostles [pastors] were released to attend to their ministry, or, as Acts states, to "give [themselves] continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word" (6:4).
A modern job description for church administrator might read: "Man of God, full of the Holy Spirit and wisdom. Able to complete multiple tasks and assume responsibility, yet maintain accountability. A provable track record of successful employment. First and foremost, an impeccable and accountable spiritual walk." The world should be able to see and bear witness to the Spirit of God in the life of the church administrator.
The Word amazingly and miraculously applies to our modern-day circumstances. For large churches that are growing by leaps and bounds, yet struggling to keep up with individual needs, the solution is found in church administration. This position is not simply a business job, nor does it consist of meager responsibilities. Rather, it is a job where God’s miraculous power, through signs and wonders, should be alive and visible to the church body–a job that serves as a witness to a lost and seeking world.