Obey them that have rule OVER YOU?

Why does Hebrew 13:17 Contradict many scriptures?

Do you know of the fact that “mistranslations”, “omissions,” or “additions” have been made deliberately into our bibles by vested interests in order to mislead the people and to thereby further a hierarchical, ruling class of so-called church officials? We will take that up in a different article. This article deals with one such scripture portion.

Doesn’t the Bible say, “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit to them;” “Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honor;” “Remember them that had the rule over you;” “Salute all them that have the rule over you;” “Likewise, ye younger, be subject unto the elder?”

These are the all-time favorite verses that church leaders love shoving down church members throats and then stand there and watch their subjects shrivel up and cower in the dust. Listen to this voice clip where the wolf Teju uses the same technique to reply to a sister who asked for a verse to support the deletion of facebook id.

The Teju Threat

Into the same class of mistranslated words as “church”, “Baptism” and “office,” you can now throw in the words “obey,” “rule over,” and “submit to them.”

Just as we know that the word “Ecclesia,” meaning an assembly or community of God’s people was deceitfully replaced with the word “church” (meaning a building or institution) by the KJV translators in order to maintain their control over the people; in like manner, by the help and aid of the Spirit, we will now clearly show you how the above verses of Scripture have also been maligned and perverted to further the agendas of power-hungry, sanctimonious control freaks who are bent on corralling unto themselves a pliant people of unquestioned servility.

We will begin with Hebrews 13:17 as our foundation and make our progression from there. This verse at first glance, seems to be loaded in favor of those who like to rule over God’s people, which is probably why it is perhaps the most favorite of “TPM church leaders.” It incorporates all of our three words together in one breath.

We will take a look at each word, and as we go along, it will become apparent not only as to what the true meanings are, but also as to the reason behind the translators’ substitution of an entirely different word to further their hierarchical/institutional agenda.

Here is Hebrews 13:17: Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you.

First off, notice this. The word “over,” is not in any way, shape, or form in the old manuscripts. This word was inserted in the text of Scripture by the translators. We will, therefore, dismiss it altogether and all that it implies.

What does Peitho Mean?

Next, let’s examine the word “Obey” or “Obey them.” Anyone can check this out simply by using a Bible software program. When we go to the Strong’s number for the word translated “obey,” we find the Greek word “Peitho”- Strong’s number 3982. It appears about 60 times. By far the most common translation for this Greek word in the King James Version is “persuade,” “persuaded,” “persuadeth,” etc.

Here is the first place this word appears in the New Testament:

Matthew 27:20But the chief priests and elders persuaded the multitude that they should ask Barabbas, and destroy Jesus.”

The chief priests and elders had no authority to command the people to ask for Barabbas or to destroy Jesus. But they we able to persuade the multitude to “ask” Pilate to do so. And so it is in Hebrews 13:17.

From Vine’s Expository Dictionary: “Peitho: to persuade, to win over; to be persuaded, to listen to, as in Acts 5:40 (passive voice). The obedience suggested is not by submission to authority, but resulting from persuasion.”

From Thayer’s and Smith’s Greek Lexicon: “Peitho: To persuade; to induce one by words to believe; to make friends of, to win one’s favor, gain one’s good will, or to seek to win one, strive to please one. To be persuaded, to suffer one’s self to be persuaded; to be induced to believe: to have faith in a thing; to believe.”

There is a Greek word for “obey.” It is “hupakouo.” “Hupakouo” appears 21 times in the New Testament and is properly translated either as “obey,” “obedience,” or “obeyed.” Here is the first time this word appears in the New Testament:

Matthew 8:27And the men marveled saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!

Also, Ephesians 6:1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.”

1st Peter 3:6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.”

The winds and the sea obeyed Christ; children are admonished to obey their parents; and Sarah obeyed Abraham calling him lord. But nowhere in Scripture are we ever told that a “pastor” or any “church leader” has the right to rule over the people as Christ rules the wind and sea; as parents rule their children; or as wives ought to obey their husbands.

The Greek word “hupakouo” is never used in that way. Rather the Greek word “PEITHO” meaning “persuaded” is used instead.

Let’s look at some more verses with the word “peitho.”

Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded (peitho) them to continue in the grace of God.Acts 13:43

And he went into the synagogue and spoke boldly for the space of three months, disputing (dialegomai: discuss, to reason) and persuading (peitho) the things concerning the kingdom of God.” Acts 19:8

Here the apostle is “reasoning,” he’s having a discussion with the people in the synagogue. He is not commanding them; he is not beckoning them to look at his credentials and thereby render obedience. No. He reasoned with them, and they were persuaded. (peitho)

The apostle was not there to “magnify his office.” He was not there to build his church. He was not there to make a name for himself. He was there for one purpose only, and that was to hold up Christ to the people.
Do you want to see a picture of true leadership? Why was Paul so “persuasive?” Because Paul himself was absolutely and thoroughly persuaded. He knew altogether of what he spoke.

…This Paul hath persuaded (peitho) and turned away much people, saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands.Acts 19:26

When standing before King Agrippa, the King said to Paul, “Almost thou persuadest (peitho) me to be a Christian.Acts 26:28

…To whom he (Paul) expounded the matter, testifying the kingdom of God, and persuading (peitho) them concerning Jesus, both from the law of Moses and from the prophets…” Acts 28:23

Here are some more Scriptures with the Greek word “peitho” meaning persuade or persuaded. Remember, we are still discussing Hebrews 13:17 where the word “obey” was substituted for the Greek word “peitho.”

Knowing, therefore, the terror of the Lord, we persuade (peitho) men…2 Corinthians 5:11
For do I now persuade (peitho) men or God; or do I seek to please men?Galatians 1:10

When I call to remembrance the unfeigned faith that is in thee, which dwelt first in thy grandmother Lois, and thy mother Eunice; and I am persuaded (peitho) that in thee also.” 2 Timothy 1:5

…For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded (peitho) that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” 2 Timothy 1:12

These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded (peitho) of them, and embraced them. Hebrews 11:13
If a church leader, be he a pastor or an elder, is living and walking by the Spirit and is continually looking to Christ as his example, he will never be desirous or demanding obedience to his so-called office or authority. The point to be observed is that mindless obedience is not what is pictured in Hebrews 13:17.

Example of Peter and Apostles

Look at the Apostle Peter. In Acts 10, God caused Peter to fall into a trance and receive a vision through which he was later sent to Cornelius’ house to bring the good news of the gospel to the Gentiles. In Acts 11, we read, “Now the apostles and the brethren that were in Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. And when Peter was come up to Jerusalem, they that were of the circumcision contended with him, saying, You went in to men uncircumcised, and didst eat with them.11:1-3

What was Peter’s response? Did he show them his badge, reminding them that he was an Apostle? Did he quote to them the verse of Scripture, “Touch not thou the Lord’s Anointed? Did he suggest that he ought not be questioned? Did he remind them of his ministerial dignity and awesome duties? Did he lash back at them in “holy anger?” No. There was absolutely nothing of this kind of grandstanding spectacle whatsoever.

Peter calmly rehearsed for them the entire incident from the beginning, right up until… “as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell on them, even as on us at the beginning. And I remembered the word of the Lord, how he said, John indeed baptized with water; but ye shall be baptized in the Holy Spirit….. And when they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, then to the Gentiles also hath God granted repentance unto life.”

He persuaded them, so much so that they were silent and glorified God. Peter did not demand obedience or uniformity. Peter’s handling of the situation with wisdom and grace caused God to be glorified. It showed how Peter carried himself and what his attitude was toward his brethren. He did not view himself as above questioning and criticism. Those who heard him were persuaded by his Godly character and walk. Remember back at the house, when Cornelius first met him and bowed down to him? What was Peter’s response? “But Peter raised him up, saying, Stand up; I myself also am a man.”

Do you see the example of Peter demanding submission, obedience, and respect to his sacred appointment? Do you detect an aura of pastoral dignity? Do you see a man standing in an “office appointed by Christ and enclothed with the authority of Christ?” Neither do I!

Now, we will look at the word “rule” or “rule over.” “Obey them that have the rule over you…” Hebrews 13:17

As with the word “o-b-e-y,” it is clear that the translator’s choice of the English word “rule” or “rule over them” was deliberately designed to not only benefit, but also to bolster the already embedded practice of institutional church control. (And yet again, the word “over” is no where present in the original text, and should be dismissed.)

When we check what the Greek word translated “rule” is in this verse and verses like it, we find that this is not a translation but a redefinition of one Greek word. The Greek word translated “rule over you” in Hebrews 13:7 and 17 and 24 is “hegeomai,” Strong’s #2233 and it is normally translated “count,” “esteem,” “to lead” or “to go before.” “…Them that have the rule over…” is a substitution by the translators. There is no connotation whatsoever of “ruling over.” True leadership is nothing more than going on ahead.

Here are some verses where this word is properly translated.

“Let nothing be done through strife or vain glory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.” Philippians 2:3

Yea verily, and I count all things to be loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but refuse, that I may gain Christ.Philippians 3:8

And to esteem them very highly in love…1 Thessalonians 5:13

Hebrews 13:17 should read “Be persuaded of those you highly esteem,” NOT “Obey them that have the rule over you.” No church leader has “dominion over your faith.”

2 Corinthians 1:24 Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.”

Obey them that have rule OVER YOU?Look again at Matthew Chapter 20. “But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. Not so shall it be among you: but whosoever would become great among you shall be your minister; and whosoever would be first among you shall be your servant; even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.”

It is NOT so among” church elders! True leaders in God’s ecclesia use His word to “persuade” those in the assembly to humble themselves and be servants one of another. They never “exercise dominion” over anyone in their care. They are rather “helpers of their joy.”

The dictionary’s use of the word “rule” or “rule over” fits very nicely in today’s local institutional church:

Control, dominion: ‘under the rule of a dictator,’ dominating power, authority, superior, preeminent, predominate, ‘rule the roost,’ command, regnancy, ascendancy, mastery.

Is this what we see in the Scriptures concerning leaders in the assembly, or is this what we see in today’s religious institutions? The English definition of the word “rule” or “rule over”is totally devoid of any meaning or even suggestion of service, of ministering, of servanthood, of being an example. Shouldn’t this by itself open your eyes? This alone should arouse our suspicions, considering that Christ-like leadership is servanthood.

Assuredly, I say to you, unless you turn and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 18:3-4

…Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life a ransom for many.Matthew 20:28

And whoever exalts himself will be humbled and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.Matthew 23:12

If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, have washed your feet, ye also ought to wash one another’s feet. For I have given you an example, that ye also should do as I have done to you.

…If ye know these things, blessed are ye if ye do them.John 13:14-17

The same is true in regards to 1 Timothy 5:17: “Let the elders that rule (proistemi) well be counted worthy of double honor.”  The Greek word proistemi, rendered “rule,” bears no association at all with authority, power, or control. It merely meant that elders (older men) are to stand with zeal; maintain themselves; should be foremost in knowledge and quality of life; a quality which rightfully should be embodied in all saints. “Proistemi” is not therefore for the few, but the duty of all.

Go ye, and stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this Life.” Acts 5:20

…when I stood before the council, except it be for this one voice, that I cried standing among them, Touching the resurrection of the dead I am called in question before you this day.Acts 24:20-21

…to the end that they who have believed God may be careful to maintain good works. Titus 3:8

And let our people also learn to maintain good works for necessary uses, that they be not unfruitful.” Titus 3:14

How did the word rule or rule over, which in the mind of the English reader conveys control and mastery over the people, find its way into the text when Paul himself wrote: Not that we are trying to dictate to you what you must believe; but are fellow workers and helpers of your joy, for by your faith you stand.2 Corinthians 1:24

Real Translation of Hebrews 13:17

Even Paul counted himself as a fellow worker, not as one who “ruled over” Christ’s Ecclesia, knowing that one stands by faith in God, not by men throwing their weight around demanding submission and obedience to their sacred office!

Hebrews 13:17, and verses similar to it, should be translated thus: “Be persuaded by your leaders, and be deferring to them, for they are vigilant for the sake of your souls, as having to render an account, that they may be doing this with joy, and not with groaning, for this is disadvantageous for you.” CLV

In Hebrews 13:7, we have another instance of “ruling over.”

Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation.

Please notice that this verse should be in the past tense, but in the KJV it was translated to read as though it were in the present tense. It is referring to those who have died in the faith; not to current “church leaders.” As with Hebrews 13:17, the phrase, “them which have the rule over” is a substitution of one Greek word – “hegeomai” (2233) meaning to esteem, to lead, to go before as a guide. Hegeomai pictures the act of guiding, going on ahead, leading the way, being an example to the assembly, not sitting and ruling over the assembly. (And as usual, the phrase “over you” is NOT in the original text.)

The previous two chapters leading up to Hebrews 13 speaks of those who have gone before as examples. We are to remember such; imitate their faith; and recall the “end of their conversation.” The “hegeomai” of the early New Testament truly followed Christ and His disciples in their example of hardship and suffering. Should we not remember and follow them?

The Lord Jesus is our only King; our Sovereign; our Lord. Our English words, rule, rule over, ruler, should only refer to Him! I suspect that even the most lethal, authoritarian leader in today’s local institutional church knows beyond a shadow of a doubt that the prevailing practice of ruling over God’s people is totally contrary to the example and teachings of Christ and His Word. I suspect that many know that “r-u-l-e-r” ought not to be worn across the forehead of a Christian. Some of these so-called “church leaders” are so arrogant; so pompous; so big-headed when they refer to themselves as rulers. Some who are assigning to themselves ministerial dignity, honors, titles, headships, not to mention huge salaries and perks, should be ashamed. But don’t hold your breath.

Along with the phrases “obey them” and “rule over them” is the phrase “submit to them.”

Hebrews 13:17: “Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit to them.”

Rightly so, the word “submit” is a horrible pill to swallow for many Christians because of the spiritual abuse and unbiblical authoritarianism that is rampant in the local institutional church.

The Greek word that was translated submit in Hebrews 13:17 is “hupeiko.” It simply means to yield or to surrender. It is closely related to “hupotasso” in 1 Peter 5:5 which says, “Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resists the proud, and gives grace to the humble.

Hupeiko in no way infers any kind of outward force being placed on the person yielding. It is voluntarily yielding to someone else in Godly love. In Christ’s ecclesia, you do not demand that someone submit to your authority. If you do, it proves that you really do not have any authority. You are not fit to lead if you are not capable of guiding.

Nowhere in the Scriptures is the Ecclesia referred to as an army. The picture of a drill sergeant barking out orders to a marching platoon is nowhere to be found in Scripture, but IS found in the church organizations of men. Many “church leaders” of various institutions have thought that this is the kind of authority that they are to possess in order for them to “rule” over God’s people. Their teachers, their seminaries, along with their carnal hearts told them to rule this way. The need to “keep people in line” by force or by ranking as in a military system, is not a Scriptural principle.

Again, look at 1 Peter 5:5: “Likewise, ye younger, submit (hupotasso) yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility; for God resists the proud, and gives grace to the humble.”

Concerning hupotasso, Strong says, “A Greek military term meaning, to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader. In non-military use, it was a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden.”

The Greek word hupotasso has a military and a non-military usage. They are as different as night and day. The one speaks of submission to a commander, while the other speaks of the willing deference of a loving family. Mindless slave-like obedience is not the relationship presented in the New Testament between elders (older men) and their brethren.

The word proud (huperephanos) in 1 Peter 5:5 is the translation of a Greek word which means literally to show above, that is, a proud person who shows himself above others. The word humble (tapeinos) is the same word that is translated lowly in Matthew11:29, where it describes the Lord’s character.

In the early secular documents, the word is found referring to the Nile River in its low stage in the words, “it runs low.” The word means “not rising far from the ground,” describing the Christian who follows in the humble and lowly steps of his Lord.

In one translation, 1 Peter 5:5 is as follows: “Likewise, younger men may be subject to the elder;
Moreover, all of you, bind about yourselves as a girdle, humility toward one another, because God opposes himself to those who set themselves above others, but gives grace to those who are lowly.

Contrary to popular “church doctrine,” Peter is not telling the believers to submit to a chain-of-command type ranking in the assembly. Neither is he accusing those who refuse to submit to their “church leaders” of being rebellious or proud! Pride is NOT the act of being un-submissive to so-called church rulers. It is the act of ignoring Christ’s lowly example and exalting one’s self above others! Pride is not the refusal to “place yourself under” some church official. It is the desired result to rise above others!

Scriptural Conclusion

Even though Jesus was God, He did not seek to rise above men. “But he emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men.Philippians 2:7

Pride is the act of setting oneself above others, not the refusal to submit to those who have wrongfully done so. Humility then is embracing the lowliness of Christ, who although He was God, humbled himself and made Himself of no reputation. If humility is to make oneself of no reputation, what then is pride?

This is the unholy place into which the doctrines and commandments of men have led people. This is what institutional religion will do and necessitates. This is the result that “the local Church” as an organization, brings upon the Lord’s people. It follows Rome, not the Lord Jesus.

It is apparent that many church leaders while viewing Christ in his glorified ruling position, seated next to the Father, have forgotten his earthly example as a servant. Church leaders are not czars. They are not the Head of the Ecclesia. All authority is His, not theirs. Any “authority” that is given is not an authority to rule and command, but to serve others, just as He did.

Be not deceived my beloved brethren. James 1:16

Obey them; Rule over them; Submit to them” are terms that have been twisted and distorted for a long, long time by men who love to command and control their fellow humans. Christ’s sheep have been corralled, mistreated and imprisoned by thieves and robbers for many, many centuries. Many have been deeply scarred through these false teachings and misapplications of men.

It is almost frightening to see how few “TPM church leaders” truly believe and understand God’s Scriptures, and how fewer yet, obey them!

If an older man (an Elder in the true meaning of the word) is above suspicion, spiritually matured, a good teacher, and truly interested in the genuine welfare of people, HE DOESN’T HAVE TO HAVE ONE OUNCE OF AUTHORITY to be of service to others and to advance the cause of Christ. He will never have to demand that people respect and listen to him, for they will do that gladly. If he is Christ-like in every area of his life, showing the same quality of love for others as did Jesus, people will be persuaded by his teaching and example and will yield to his wisdom.

The example of Jesus is the most powerful argument against the idea of a ruling clergy. Did He model one thing, only to build another? Did He come serving, only to elevate His people’s status later down the road? We think not!

If it is not His doing, reflecting His image, portraying His character, it is then NOT of His workmanship, neither is it His Ecclesia!

Sourced from Wicked Shepherds

32 Comments on “Obey them that have rule OVER YOU?”

  1. I believe 1 Tim 5:17 isn’t speaking of older men in the assembly as the article states. In context, an elder (presbyteroi) are church elders who preach an teach. In the NT, the word for “elder” and “bishop” are used interchangeably and used to refer to the same office. The early church didn’t have a “pastor” for every church but an “elder” (see Acts 20:17,28-30, Titus 1:5). Also look at 1 Peter 5:1,2 “To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care”. So an elder (while the word “presbyteroi” can refer to older men in general, in context it refers to an elder/bishop.

    I say this because 1 Tim 5-17-21 is a very important passage. It deals with how church leaders (elders) are to be held accountable.

    “17 Let the elders who rule (proistamenoi) well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.” 19 Do not admit a charge against an elder except on the evidence of two or three witnesses. 20 As for those who persist in sin, rebuke them in the presence of all, so that the rest may stand in fear. 21 In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus and of the elect angels I charge you to keep these rules without prejudging, doing nothing from partiality.”

    Here the word “proistamenoi” literally means to “stand in front”. It means the same as “Hegeomai” as stated in the article “guiding, going on ahead, leading the way, being an example to the assembly, not sitting and ruling over the assembly. (And as usual, the phrase “over you” is NOT in the original text”.

    1. 1 Tim 5:1 starts with how to behave with an Elder. This is an epistle to Timothy. Supposing Timothy was the most acceptable person for Paul in Ephesus, he is asked to deal with elders in a special way. How do we know that this is for the OLDER person and not of a position? the Whole chapter is written for people of different age groups. Elder, Younger, Older women, Married Women, Younger women. So it’s reasonable to believe that the term ELDER is for OLDER Men.
      Verse 17 tells us that among the elders, there are some who minister in the Word of God. So its is pretty sure that Elders are not a position but a respectable group because of their age and experience.

      To get the complete context of 1 Peter chapter 5 vs 1, we should read the following verses at least till verse 5. In verse 5 we see Peter addressing the Younger which is clearly contrasting with the Elder in vs 1
      That is the reason for me accepting the verse ELDER as older compared to Younger.

      The positional Title of PASTOR is nowhere to be seen in the Bible as is used in many modern churches.

      1. Yes I agree. There were no titles such as “pastors” in the early church. Every church had elders who taught, preached and took care of the affairs of the church. While 1 Peter 5 talks of elders and the younger ones, it clearly states that elders are the ones who “shepherd the flock of God” “EXERCISING OVERSIGHT, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; NOT DOMINEERING OVER those in your charge, but being EXAMPLES to the flock.”

        That is how an elder must lead the church, something that never happens in TPM.

        1. True Brother.
          In TPM if someone is in their Ministry for over 10 years, he gets the position of ELDER. And it is so insane that this ELDER rules and acts like a dictator over his church that anybody can understand that they are violating Matthew 20:26 and many other similar passages. Truly they are not servants from God.

  2. I like the way the above article is presented. Can anyone please expound Heb 13:7.as well.

    Having read this post I have few questions now.
    What about Church discipline? How to address disorderliness in the church. What are your thoughts on strong leadership sometimes some situations may warrant. Are we advocating rebellion?
    I know TPM sheep are confounded these days. Tpm Ministers are sheepish.
    In our meeting we often hear about korah story. Miriam story. Particularly king uzziah. I would like to start a debate on this. Are these old testament examples written for our admonition? Such messages instill fear in the heart of believers. Is it a healthy fear or unhealthy fear?

    1. If anybody tells you about Korah or Miriam, tell them that that was in the old testament but in New Testament, we are plagued with Diotrepheses(3 John 1:9) and Nicolatians(Revelation 2:6, 14-15).
      In Old testament, God dealt with a community through certain individuals. However, in New Testament God has come into our spirit and dwells within us. WE ARE THE TEMPLE OF THE LIVING GOD.

      Each one of us are Kings and Priests unto God. We do not need any special priest other than the High Priest Jesus Christ. Revelation 1:6

      Next time a TPM Minister, refers to the Faith Home as the HOUSE OF GOD, Ask him to show the proof that this building is the House of God. He will have no proofs. Rather we have ample proofs to show that God Dwells within each one of us Acts 7:48

      In the New testament, we do not want any such seducing Human Teachers as the Anointing of the Holy Spirit is more than enough for our teaching. 1 John 2:26-27

      1. Hi, it’s me again. I was just thinking about this verse in particular.

        While the article here takes great pains to show that ministry is not ruling over the church​, the article never addresses who these people are. Who are these guides, who apparently must give account for the ones they watch over? And who is holding them accountable?

        Also, while Korah is an old testament story, the warning regarding him is mentioned in the New testament as well, so I think it would be unwise to completely disregard the warning.

        1. Brother..I don’t yet understand that what makes you think you are a Moses, a Paul etc. An organizational Worker( of TPM or any other Organization) claiming to be equivalent to Moses/Paul to Push their agenda itself is so beyond normal comparison. Please get out of that groove and start thinking as one of the Born again person, who happens to be of the Royal priesthood like any other Christian. Till you keep yourself on that non-existent pedestal, you will not be able to understand what is explained. Let GO off that man-made Organizational clergy position before you read the Bible. Be as a Little Child to understand the Mysteries.

        2. Dear Admin,

          I see here that Warren is asking a simple specific question and am sure it could be addressed to, with ease.

          Two moot points to mull over, which you could-
          a- Who are God’s representatives we need to so respect?
          b- Should we disregard Korah purely because he is a OT character?

          The answer will go a long way in clarifying the general doubts of many.

          Over to you.

        3. I am simply asking a question based on the verse. If you have an answer, I will glad to hear it. But I don’t think attacking me is answering the question. Who are the people described in that verse? It says they must give account for us: to whom do they give account?

          This is not me speaking from an agenda, but simply asking a question from the scripture used in the article. If you are able to give an answer regarding the scripture, please do so.

        4. Ok Brother Warren..Am I not right in telling you that you have an orientation which tries to justify the clergy position before you read the scriptures or any article? I can see it clearly in each communication. So I am not attacking you but telling that plainly.
          Now coming to the point. I think Brother Richard answered your first Point. I do not wish to add to it. If his answer is not getting through to any specifics, please do respond.

          As far as the Second Point is concerned, I think TPM Stands in Violation and Guilty of Korah’s Rebellion. (Jude 1:11). We have ONE HIGH PRIEST and HE IS JESUS CHRIST. Korah wanted to dilute the importance of Moses and Aaron in the OT. We clearly see that TPM Pastors want to Dilute the Uniqueness of Jesus Christ when they claim to be HIGH PRIESTS Num 16:9-10. They Want to Dilute the Devotion to Jesus Christ when they say they can bear the sins of their congregation. They say much more such things which according to me are Blasphemous. Each of their sermons makes it very clear that they want to present themselves as co-regents with Christ over their believers.I have never heard any TPM Pastor preaching that the Believers are the ROYAL PRIESTHOOD and there is no specialty with the TPM Organization Workers(Who falsely claim to be Apostles) when it comes to a relationship with GOD.This is one of the key questions we have been asking. So Brother Warren and all your colleagues need to fear when you dilute the Uniqueness of Jesus and teach people. A real repentance and Turning away from this deceiving Doctrine is needed at this point to make any comeback.

        5. Also, if I might add, one of the behaviors of TPM which is often pointed out here, is a refusal to answer questions. It would be good if you were to show a different attitude, to welcome questions, to welcome inquiries, to admit that none of us knows all the answers, etc.

          To disregard the question, and just accuse me of believing I am a Paul or Moses without knowing me personally is unfair, and I think out of the spirit of Christ. As far as I can recall, I have not spoken against anyone posting here, or made assumptions about anyone. I think it is only fair for you to do the same.

          If your answer is “I don’t know to whom the verse is referring, I don’t know to whom they must give account,” there is no shame in that. Or, “Can I get back to you on that? I had not considered those questions before.” That is also civil. But to just cut me off without any attempt to address the question seems like the behavior that you want to correct in TPM.

        6. I hope you have already got the answers to both the points…Please do respond if it is not answering you.

        7. I would like to comment on Korah’s case in Bible. It is taught (brainwashed I should say) that TPM workers are Moses/Aaron of present times. Believers are threatened that if anyone dares to raise his voice against TPM saints then he will die like Korah, Dathan and Abiram. Now, if you read the story of Korah’s destruction, Moses informs us what their sin was. In Num 16:9-10 Moses says, “Is it a small thing…… YE SEEK PRIESTHOOD?” This is key verse to understand the grievousness of sins of Dathan, Korah and Abiram. Dathan and Korah sought the priesthood position that was fixed by God for Aaron and his sons. We know that Aaron as high priest points to Jesus. Book of Hebrews is very clear to teach that Jesus is the high priest in the New Testament. Therefore Korah’s story is shadow of warning for those people who seek priesthood position from Aaron. In other words those men who seek priesthood position which is fixed for Jesus are shadow of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. Finally, I fear TPM workers have dared to do this. This has been made clear in articles titled “Heresies in TPM part II and Part III”

        8. Brother Warren, In the early church period, every local church had elders (plural, every local church had a plurality of elders). They were men chosen from among the same congregation. The New Testament has crystal clear instructions on who could be seen as elders.

          1 Tim 3:1-13 “This saying is trustworthy: “If someone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a good work.” 2 The overseer then must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, an able teacher, 3 not a drunkard, not violent, but gentle, not contentious, free from the love of money. 4 He must manage his own household well and keep his children in control without losing his dignity. 5 But if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for the church of God? 6 He must not be a recent convert or he may become arrogant and fall into the punishment that the devil will exact. 7 And he must be well thought of by those outside the faith, so that he may not fall into disgrace and be caught by the devil’s trap. 8 Deacons likewise must be dignified, not two-faced, not given to excessive drinking, not greedy for gain, 9 holding to the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And these also must be tested first and then let them serve as deacons if they are found blameless. 11 Likewise also their wives must be dignified, not slanderous, temperate, faithful in every respect. 12 Deacons must be husbands of one wife and good managers of their children and their own households. 13 For those who have served well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and great boldness in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.”
          Titus 1:5-9 “The reason I left you in Crete was to set in order the remaining matters and to appoint elders in every town, as I directed you. 6 An elder must be blameless, the husband of one wife, with faithful children who cannot be charged with dissipation or rebellion. 7 For the overseer must be blameless as one entrusted with God’s work, not arrogant, not prone to anger, not a drunkard, not violent, not greedy for gain. 8 Instead he must be hospitable, devoted to what is good, sensible, upright, devout, and self-controlled. 9 He must hold firmly to the faithful message as it has been taught, so that he will be able to give exhortation in such healthy teaching and correct those who speak against it.”

          I don’t see how TPM ministers who call themselves elders qualify to be called as such according to the word of God. Elders are to lead by example which is why they had to be married. Are TPM ministers apostles? I don’t think they qualify to be called that either. Apostles in the NT are those who witnessed Christ’s resurrection and they penned God breathed scripture. And according to 1 Cor 9:5, they travelled with their wives. Their teachings are what makes the foundation of the Christian faith. One doesn’t become an apostle on account of ministering in a particular denomination.
          Now, if we follow the biblical instruction, there must be plurality of elders in a local church. Elders were to direct the affairs of the local church. According to 1 Tim 5:17, it is clear that only some elders were involved in teaching and preaching and some not (maybe the others were deacons? I’m not sure). In any case, the elders were folks who were mature in their faith so they could lead by example with scripture as the highest authority. Someone who doesn’t lead an exemplary family life cannot be an elder according to scripture. So how can a TPM minister lead by example in that regard? Bible says to submit to one another too (Eph 5). So elders too must submit to every other believer. In any case, the meaning of Heb 13:17 in light of other scripture would be “obey the scriptures as properly taught”. Though parts of the body of Christ has different functions, no part has authority over another. We submit to each other out of reverence for Christ with scripture as the foundation and the church as a whole submits to Christ.

        9. I would like to add that these ELDERS were belonging to the LOCAL CHURCH BODY. They were not imports who got transferred to RULE OVER the believers.

        10. Exactly. They were from the same local church. The whole congregation could attest to the exemplary character of the elders. They had to faithfully teach the truth from scripture without adding anything new or taking anything out. Since the elders too submitted to the every other member of the local church, they had every authority to discipline a sinning elder. There was absolutely no divide between “elders” and the rest of the congregation apart from the ministry they did. Like them, the rest of the congregation too were “servants of God”, “ministers” and a “royal priesthood”. Each had their own ministry as part of the Body of Christ. No one was above another.

          “19 Do not entertain an accusation against an elder unless it is brought by two or three witnesses. 20 But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning. 21 I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.” (1 Tim 5:19-21)

        11. TPM and many Institutional churches do not like the Presbytery model where the Local Elders are the responsible ones. Timothy got his prophetical anointing after the elders laid the hands on him. 1 Timothy 4:14
          Here we have an organization who has a leader claiming to be the CHIEF SHEPHERD usurping the title due ONLY to Jesus Christ . What More? This New CHIEF SHEPHERD is the one laying the hands on his Organizational Workers and sending them to rule over simple ignorant folks. These Organizational workers collect Taxes (renamed Tithe) and keep this organization running. The way the CP acts while laying on the hands is quite hilarious.But people think that the Anointing of God is on him. Dear TPM Chief Pastor, Stop this acting.

          Timothy did not feel any inferior when the other elders(probably junior to him) laid hands on him. Can you imagine that way in TPM? The roof will come out in that case.

        12. Again, to be clear, I’m not trying to defend specifically TPM ministry.

          I am asking a simple question based on the bible verse which is the main verse talked about in the article.

          The question is as follows: who are the people here who give account for the congregation? I think the answer you’re putting forth is the local elders, appointed for each congregation.

          My second question is, to whom do they give account? Is it to God? The writer of Hebrews says their account should be given with joy, and not with grief, because the latter would be unprofitable for those of whom the account is made.

          If they are accountable for the souls, and if they are being held accountable to God for those souls, is that not a position of being “over” those souls?

          It seems like there is a reaction to the word “over” on this website, but there is nothing wrong with that idea. Parents are over children, husbands are over wives–and God ordained it so. The clergy of the OT was ordained of God, as was the royal line, as were the prophets. If you are suggesting that God has changed His way of doing things under the new covenant, that is fine to suggest, but bear in mind the old system was also God’s doing, and therefore is not inherently evil. Consider that even in the Millennial kingdom, the priesthood will be reinstated, so God apparently has nothing against that kind of order. Jesus made reference to different ones who would rule over tribes and sit on thrones during that Millennial kingdom, so then also He will have a hierarchical system.

          And in the list of things God has placed in the church, “administrations” “governments” are part of that.

          But I’m not asking you to explain all that: only from Heb 13:17, the verse used as the base for the article, how is the end of the verse explained: who are the people who watch over the souls, and to whom must they give account? (Who are those people in the church today?)

        13. Brother Warren,

          //If they are accountable for the souls, and if they are being held accountable to God for those souls, is that not a position of being “over” those souls?//

          “Over” in what sense? I believe that is explained in Acts 20:28-30 (AMP). Speaking to elders Paul says “Take care and be on guard for yourselves and for the whole flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you as overseers, to shepherd (tend, feed, guide) the church of God which He bought with His own blood. 29 I know that after I am gone, [false teachers like] ferocious wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 even from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse and distorted things, to draw away the disciples after themselves [as their followers].”

          So an elder that God has appointed is someone who tends to the flock of God. They don’t pervert and distort scripture. These overseers are answerable to God, because the bible says it is the Holy Spirit that made them overseers. We are under no obligation to submit to “elders” who “speak perverse things and distort”. So in a local assembly, elders (plural) teach and preach from God and if they don’t distort the truth, we are to submit to their teachings from scripture and they are answerable to God. Like I previously said, even the elders were under submission to the congregation (Eph 5:21 and 1 Tim 5:17). My point is that in the end it isn’t “elders” we are obeying but scripture.

        14. Brother Richard will Respond But my 2 cents follows

          Brother Warren,
          Scriptures cannot be contradicting. Romans 14:12 says So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. Each one of us has to give an account of ourselves.
          So here the elder is expected to give an account of himself and his ministry. His Ministry is Not Ruling over. Its dispensing of his responsibility to the fellowship. It has to be taken as SERVING and not a RULING or OVER YOU.
          “…and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” Luke 12:48.
          This is a place where we need to go back to a Genesis incident. God asked Adam why did he sin. He Pointed out to Eve as the Culprit and Eve Passed on the problem to the serpent.
          So in the Bema seat of Jesus, we should NOT be seen as a hindrance to the reward of the Elder (Please note this is not the Organization worker who gets the ELDER Designation) entitled to.


          Let us be practical. Nobody can watch over anybody. Yes, Physically you may put him in prison and watch over him/her like you do in the Faith Homes. But is this what we mean by the verse? Because of the Clergy assuming to watch over somebody they have this controlling attitude. Do not think that the Holy Spirit within the Christian is Idle and incapable of doing his work. Demas Abandoned Paul (2 Timothy 4:10). Was it because Paul did not do a good Job as his Elder? Will God ask Demas’s Soul from Paul?

          There is only ONE WAY to watch over their Souls. This is by imparting the Right Teachings and Faith to the members of the body. The Right teaching is to keep them encouraged and doctrinally strong in the WORD OF GOD.
          So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17
          Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly. James 3:1

          The Christian is expected to Submit to these Teachings and Not the Person himself i.e Elder.

        15. If you prefer that I not ask questions on this website, you can choose not to publish this comment, and I will get the message.

          It was my assumption that you were sincerely wanting to engage in discussion on these matters. You write that I am approaching the scriptures from a clergy-based view. That is correct. That is the way I have always seen it. And if I am to see it differently, it has be to because people are patiently willing to work with me through my questions. (Also, consider that most of Christendom is of this opinion, I would think, and to suggest otherwise is to place the burden of proof on yourselves, not with a few isolated scriptures, but with the general context of the scriptures.)

          The answer Richard has given has raised more questions in my mind, and I will ask them here. Again, if you prefer that I not write, if you are not happy with the questions, don’t publish this comment, and I will get the message. You need not fear that I will start another account to troll your site: I don’t have time for such foolishness. I was writing all along on the presumption that intelligent, respectful dialog could take place here.

          One additional question regards the idea of an “out-of-towner” being sent to be over an assembly. That seems to have been the practice in the early church: Paul wanted to send Apollos, Timothy, Titus and others to see about the church, to deal with certain problems, to ordain the elders in certain places. So while there were local elders, there were also those who would be sent, for the purpose of strengthening the church.

          Regarding married or single, etc., that seems more like an argument directed against TPM, which I wasn’t trying to defend. I don’t see why a single minister would be unable to minister, as Paul was single, and advocated that as well, but that’s neither here nor there.

          Although I see the pattern of eldership that you’re describing in the local churches, I do also see the ones who would oversee. The churches sent representatives to Jerusalem in Acts 15 to settle the matter of Gentiles and Jews, and the decree decided there was sent abroad to the churches. Paul wanted to see those in Jerusalem to have the right hand of fellowship from them. These scriptures are also there, which seem to indicate that there were general overseers for the churches as well.

          Although it’s a bit tricky, since it’s the book of Revelations, there is the idea of Jesus sending epistles to the seven churches, which he addressed not to the church at large, but specifically to the “angel” of the church, which some would understand to be the messenger, the minister for the church. Jesus addressed that person in particular, it would seem, because he had responsibility over the flock.

          As I mentioned in a previous comment, Jesus sought laborers for the harvest fields, after He had already preached the gospel to the people. They were sheep without a shepherd, though He was there.

          I am trying to understand how all those ideas fit into the non-clergy mindset, and I’m happy to hear your biblical explanations.

          If you choose not to publish this, I thank you at least for conversing with me up until now, and I do hope to meet and greet you warmly when we all get to heaven.

        16. This site has never removed or unpublished any comment unless the comments were having abusing words or Spam Materials.

        17. Brother Warren, I welcome questions. Questioning is how we all learn.

          //One additional question regards the idea of an “out-of-towner” being sent to be over an assembly. That seems to have been the practice in the early church: Paul wanted to send Apollos, Timothy, Titus and others to see about the church, to deal with certain problems, to ordain the elders in certain places. So while there were local elders, there were also those who would be sent, for the purpose of strengthening the church.
          Regarding married or single, etc., that seems more like an argument directed against TPM, which I wasn’t trying to defend. I don’t see why a single minister would be unable to minister, as Paul was single, and advocated that as well, but that’s neither here nor there.//
          The point I was making wasn’t that elders from other cities didn’t visit another local assembly. My point was, the elders who directed the affairs of the church was ALWAYS selected from the same local assembly. Paul was an apostle, and people like Timothy and Titus merely followed what God revealed to Paul. We do not have apostle Paul living today. What we have are his writings which is part of God-breathed scripture. It would be a gross error to assume someone like Paul is alive today to give a different set of instruction other than the one given in scripture. What we can do is follow the directions given by God through Paul when we select elders for local assemblies today. And every single time, Paul mentions the qualification for an elder, he stresses on the fact that an elder must be an example in the way he takes care of his wife and children. Paul even goes on to say that even unbelievers must have a good report of him. Regarding the married, Paul was never an elder. He was an apostle. He was an apostle to the gentiles, he evangelised. He had a secular job to support himself. Paul makes no exception when stating the requirements of an elder. There was only one sure way of testing the character of the one who wanted to be an elder, that is to look at the way he handled his wife and kids. Deviating from this is like going away from the divine order in scripture

          //Although I see the pattern of eldership that you’re describing in the local churches, I do also see the ones who would oversee. The churches sent representatives to Jerusalem in Acts 15 to settle the matter of Gentiles and Jews, and the decree decided there was sent abroad to the churches. Paul wanted to see those in Jerusalem to have the right hand of fellowship from them. These scriptures are also there, which seem to indicate that there were general overseers for the churches as well.//
          Acts 20 makes it clear that the elders and overseers are synonymous. It’s not a different office. There were apostles and there were elders in local assembly. Apostles died and left behind their writings which were God breathed, so their words are still with us to direct us in these things.

          //Although it’s a bit tricky, since it’s the book of Revelations, there is the idea of Jesus sending epistles to the seven churches, which he addressed not to the church at large, but specifically to the “angel” of the church, which some would understand to be the messenger, the minister for the church. Jesus addressed that person in particular, it would seem, because he had responsibility over the flock.//
          I beg to differ. Though the letter was sent to the elders at the church, the letters were addressed to the entire congregation. For example, the church at Ephesus, it wasn’t just the elder that left his first love but the congregation. It was the entire congregation that tested those who claimed to be apostles and found them to be liars. I don’t think anyone is denying the existence of elders in the church who direct the affairs. All I’m saying is that there is no divide between the elders and the rest.

        18. Thank you for taking time to respond.

          Many of the things you are putting forth are becoming clearer (make sense).

          As back in the church days, they had Paul and others who could send Timothy and Titus to be over a church or to ordain elders, now that we are without apostles, who has that authority to appoint, or to send others to appoint?

          I do believe, as you do also, that Christ is the Head of the church, that no one man has that responsibility on earth. Even in the biblical times, there was no one clear leader. James was the main speaker in Acts 15, though he was not one of the original 12. Peter was the main speaker on the day of Pentecost. Paul carries the weight for most of the discussion at the end of Acts. John outlived them all, and was influential for the next generation.

          Peter’s “church” was different than Paul’s in practice, hence the delineation between the ministry to the Gentiles, and the ministry to the Jews (who kept much of the OT practices in their NT worship, like shaving heads, etc): but they recognized it was the same God working in each, one to minister to Jews, and the other to minister to Gentiles.

          Random point again: about those who are over the church of necessity having a wife and children: does that mean a family that has no children should not be appointed elders? Because children are mentioned in all those passages, does that mean a couple without children are unfit to be elders?

          Earlier in the comments, I think admin has quoted James saying let not many of you become teachers, the reason being the standard of judgment is higher. Is he outrightly discouraging such ministry, or just urging that it be done in the fear of God? Would it be a safe understanding to say that the teachers, if they teach well, would have a greater reward? If they will be judged greater, then their reward also should be greater. (Paul seems to indicate the same, when he says those who rule well should be treated with double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine.)

          I am more or less satisfied with the answers you all have given. (I don’t necessarily see everything the way you see it, but a lot of what you’re saying makes sense, and has given me plenty to think about.)

          Thank you for taking the time to respond.

        19. Teachers are worthy of Double Honour (1 Timothy 5:17). But they need to be double cautious when they teach others. The reason is that, this teaching can create huge issues through the generations if they teach wrongly.

        20. Brother Warren,

          //now that we are without apostles, who has that authority to appoint, or to send others to appoint?//

          There are two options. One is the RC way which says there is an unbroken line of apostolic succession and the authority is passed down from one pope to the next right from Peter to Francis. The other is this (and this is what I understand from scripture, so I’m speaking for myself here) – Paul has left behind instructions on how to appoint elders. A local assembly is to select few elders from their midst to oversee the matters of the local assembly. Since there is no “unbroken line of apostolic succession”, I assume the local church should pray about it and appoint elders.

          //about those who are over the church of necessity having a wife and children: does that mean a family that has no children should not be appointed elders? Because children are mentioned in all those passages, does that mean a couple without children are unfit to be elders?//

          Perhaps they could be elders as scripture doesn’t prohibit unmarried men from serving as elder. I may have overstepped in my understanding of the text since I had the unbiblical qualifications that TPM puts forward here in India in my mind when I wrote that. On further reading, I understand that Paul’s assumption was that those who desired to be overseers were married and had kids. The culture at that time was rife with polygamous relationships and that part of the checklist was more to disallow such men from being elders. In any case, it is safe to assume the majority of the elders were married and had kids. Maybe a few unmarried men with exceptional characters too could serve as elders? I do not know. But I think if one were to try and follow the biblical instruction on selecting elders, the ONLY TWO passages we can use mention they are to be married to one wife and their children should not be rebellious. Maybe there were exceptions, but the norm I see from scripture is that elders were family men.

          //(Paul seems to indicate the same, when he says those who rule well should be treated with double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine.)//

          The passage that says elders who are involved in preaching and teaching are worthy of double honor is speaking about the provisions(wages) of the elders.

          1 Tim 5:17 “Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. 18 For the Scripture says, “You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain,” and, “The laborer deserves his wages.”

        21. I think the purpose of having children being raised Godly is to assure that you are not putting a person as elder who do not have a long term consistent testimony.

          There might be many good brothers but put someone who has that maturity and knows how to deal with different things within the church and also the world.

          The current breed of TPM Ministers are more in a religious rat race with no understanding or experience of these things. Sometimes they say things so unwise standing on the pulpit that I turn around to see if some outsider is there to hear these. It is truly very embarassing sometimes.

        22. Any way brother Warren, it goes without saying I have thoroughly enjoyed these exchanges. Question are always welcome. Being a TPM believer, questioning was the one thing forbidden so this is a breath of fresh air. God Bless you.

        23. I am equally grateful to you for the gracious exchange. I honestly was hesitant, because I thought to ask questions might be entering the lions’ den. For the most part, responses have been gracious, and I thank you for that.

          I generally receive updates when there is a new article posted here, and do read everything that’s shared here.

          My sincere belief is that God will not mislead someone who wants truth above all else, someone who is actively seeking Him for that. (The sincere wise men were guided to see Jesus even through the help of insincere Herod, because their hearts were true.)

  3. Thanks Brother Admin and other Brothers.. Here people can question, reason, debate.. still you guys answer with gratitude yet with profound biblical balance.. imagine.. you raise any questions with TPM servants of God… even to the least.. they immediately curse you or threaten you… I have experienced… God Bless you All

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