Can A Christian Male Be Qualified For The Eldership If He Has A Stepson or Stepdaughter Who Is A Christian?
One of the qualifications a man must have in order to be appointed to the eldership is 1 Timothy 3:4,5, “one who rules his own house well, having his children in submission with all reverence (for if a man does not know how to rule his own house, how will he take care of the church of God?)” and Titus 1:6, “having faithful children.”
First, this qualification demonstrates that the Christian man is succeeding in leading his family in becoming mature faithful adults. He has a great influence upon them. It follows that a faithful, Christian father who is successfully training his children in the Lord (handling various problems in the home, etc.) is fit spiritually to handle problems in the household of God – the church. His character has “passed the test” of managing and watching out for other Christians’ souls in the same congregation.
Second, notice “children” is generic and could be biological, adopted, or stepchildren. This qualification has nothing to do with the ability of the man to procreate (Jesus was not Joseph’s biological father, yet Joseph is included in the Lord’s genealogy because Joseph, who was a righteous man, raised Jesus).
Perhaps the only discussion with this qualification would be if a man who has scripturally married a woman recently who has Christian children from another husband. It would depend on how long he has been a stepfather. Has it only been a year? Would that be enough time to say that he is capable of spiritually raising a Christian child? This would need to be examined on a case-by-case basis.
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